When the Tokyo String Quartet retired from performance—and from its residency at the Yale School of Music—last year, the school didn't exactly have a process in place to guide the search for a new quartet. It hadn't come up much, since the Tokyo quartet had been there since 1977. At a press briefing yesterday introducing their successors, Dean Robert Blocker said that the school’s faculty, staff, and students not only had an opinion about the process, “most people had three or four opinions about it.”
Blocker said he was looking for a group that was not only musically talented, but that also had “values that give their music an extra dimension” and that could be “role models for our students.” They chose the Brentano String Quartet, an acclaimed ensemble that has been in residence at Princeton for the last 15 years. “I remember stalking them at the Cliburn competition because I wanted to see how they handled a rehearsal,” Blocker said.