With its spectacular concerts and three released studio albums, the Kaleidoscope String Quartet has established itself internationally in recent years. The four Swiss musicians transcend the classical string quartet format into new dimensions, leaving behind genre boundaries and at times elicit their instruments from unconventional to unexpected tones. Already on their second album Curiosity the ensemble fascinated with striking timbres and charismatic original compositions. All the more they amaze at subsequent performances by virtuosity, dynamic joy of improvisation – and consistent renouncement of any sheet music.
Their third album Reflections includes two compositions by Simon Heggendorn and one by violist David Schnee, but focuses on pieces by a “foreign” pen. The ensemble commissioned compositions from Nik Bärtsch, Mathias Rüegg and Nicole Johänntgen, as well as by the viennese Georg Breinschmid, Ephrem Lüchinger and saxophonist Nicole Johänntgen.
Rhythmic phrasing and grooves have always been the hallmarks of the Kaleidoscope String Quartet, as well as its stylistic range that extends to folk-like melodies. KSQ was founded in 2009 on the occasion of a production in which the strings cooperated with a jazz quintet. In 2011 the debut album Magenta was released, and shortly after the ensemble was awarded the ZKB Jazz Prize.
The quartet performs regularly, locally and abroad at prestigious festivals including the Lucerne Festival, Murten Classics, Cully Jazz, Jazz Festival Willisau, Langnau Jazz Nights, Schleswig Holstein Music Festival, Cairo Jazz Festival as well as in renowned concert halls and jazz clubs such as Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, Paul Klee Zentrum Bern, Moods Jazz Club Zurich, BeJazz Bern and Jazz Dock Prague.
The quartet, whose members are professionally trained in both classical and jazz, have come to define their own musical language by way of skillfully eliminating musical boundaries and constantly exploring the connective ties to other music genres such as pop and rock. Edgy grooves rise and fall between imaginative soundscapes while folkloric melodies encounter adventurously experimental improvisations.