Opium String Quartet (O.S.Q) was founded in the spring of 2004 and made its debut some three months later at the Jerzy Waldorff Summer Festival in Radziejowice. Since then the quartet has become firmly established among Polish chamber ensembles, participating in such Polish musical events and festivals as, Portraits of Composers, Warsaw Music Encounters, Warsaw Autumn, Chopiniana, Sygnowano Fabryka Trzciny (Signed Cane Factory), “…and Lutosławski”, Chain IX, Singer’s Warsaw Jewish Culture Festival, the “Fryderyk” 2011 Gala, the International FORTE Piano Festival of Stars in Toruń, the Łańcut Music Festival, the Galicia Multicultural Festival. The ensemble has performed in many prestigious concert halls including the Warsaw Philharmonic in Warsaw, the Witold Lutosławski Polish Radio Concert Studio, the Agnieszka Osiecka Polish Radio Studio as well as the Royal Castle in Warsaw, the Gdańsk Shipyards, the Cane Factory, Kraków Opera and Grand Theatre in Łódź.
Apart from Classical pieces, the O.S.Q’s repertoire includes many works by Polish composers from Fryderyk Chopin, Karol Szymanowski and Witold Maliszewski through to contemporary composers such as Grażyna Bacewicz, Sławomir Czarnecki, Wojciech Kilar, Bartosz Kowalski-Banasewicz, Andrzej Krzanowski, Maciej Małecki, Piotr Moss, Tomasz Opałka, Dariusz Przybylski and Stanisław Radwan. The ensemble’s sphere of interest also includes compositions by Eunho Chang and Veronika Krausas. Numerous premiere performances of contemporary music, popularization of native creativity as well as active collaboration with Polish composers by commissioning new works and arrangements constitutes the quartet’s main area of activity. As a result in recent years the ensemble has become involved with the Polish recording companies: CD Accord and Acte Préalable.
Each of the quartet’s CDs of music by Polish composers presents different musical styles and genres,
introducing listeners to works never before recorded. The ensemble’s debut album Back to Melody was nominated for the 2011 “Fryderyk” award. The quartet’s second CD of premiere recordings released
in 2012 is dedicated to the works of Maciej Małecki.
The quartet collaborates with distinguished musicians and actors including Teresa Budzisz-Krzyżanowska, Krzesimir Dębski, Paweł Gusnar, Jan Nowicki, Jadwiga Rappé, Anna Seniuk, Tomasz Stańko, Tomasz Strahl and Jerzy Zelnik and has often participated in recordings of music for the National Theatre in Warsaw. The ensemble is also credited with programmes of their own authorship: Cross – Flowering Tree, Rescued Sounds and Tango Therapy.
The Opium String Quartet is composed of four graduates of the Fryderyk Chopin Music Academy in Warsaw (presently University of Music). All the chamber players come from families with rich and multi-generational traditions in music and art.
More info: www.opium.art.pl