Stenhammar Quartet

“The exceptional Stenhammar Quartet”
The Guardian


Formed in 2002, the Stenhammar Quartet has established itself as one of Scandinavia’s leading string quartets. A wide-ranging repertoire spans from the Classical period to contemporary works, while naturally affording the quartets of Wilhelm Stenhammar and other Swedish composers their allotted space. The Quartet regularly commissions works from Nordic composers, and has collaborated with figures such as Anders Hillborg, Sven-David Sandström, Kaija Saariaho and Bent Sørensen. In 2009 the ensemble was commended by the Royal Swedish Academy of Music for its contributions to Swedish music.

The Stenhammar Quartet has to date made some forty recordings for Swedish Radio, participated in broadcasts on Swedish television and been the subject of a documentary on the French music channel Mezzo. Its several recordings for record labels such as BIS, CPO och Alba have met with  critical acclaim from reviewers both in Sweden and internationally, earning the Quartet two  nominations for the Swedish “Grammis” Awards. 2024 will see the release of the first disc of two with quartets by the Finnish composer Kalevi Aho.

Touring extensively, the Stenhammar Quartet has performed across Europe, as well as Japan, Algeria and India, appearing at prestigious venues such as Beethoven-Haus Bonn and Tokyo Bunka Kaikan. Plans for the next couple of years include visits to Canada (2024) as well as to Greece and Japan (2025).

Latest release

Composed between 1894 and 1916 Wilhelm Stenhammar’s body of six numbered string quartets is considered unique among Scandinavian music of its time, both in its consistency and in its musical aspirations. Together, the quartets reflect the composer’s development, from full-blown Romanticism to a more sparse and formally concentrated idiom that distances itself from late-Romantic conventions. Taking its name from the composer, the Stenhammar Quartet was the first ever to propose a complete traversal of the cycle on CD, including the world première recording of a quartet in F minor that Stenhammar withdrew from his official catalogue after completing it. The series was greeted with great international interest and critical acclaim, both for performances described as ‘exceptional’ (The Guardian) and for the quality of the music itself: ‘there is no doubt that Stenhammar belongs to the unknown great masters of the string quartet genre’ ( « On admire sans réserve la prestation des Stenhammar […]. Le Quatuor boucle une intégrale non seulement exhaustive […] mais surtout de référence. » (Diapason, February 2015) “The music is as ear-pleasing and emotionally satisfying as anyone could ask for, and the performances by this outstanding Scandinavian ensemble, complemented by BIS’s vibrant SACD recording, make this an unqualified recommendation.” (Fanfare, March/April 2014) “Das Stenhammar Quartet spielt wie schon auf den beiden vorangehenden CDs mit der Musik seines Namensgebers technisch vollendet, synchron im Ausdruck und mit feiner Klangkultur […]” (, 30. 12. 2014)