Music series

Emerson Quartet bids farewell to Denver on Friends of Chamber Music series

The Emerson Quartet is often called “the American string quartet”, and for good reason. For 47 years, the ensemble has traveled the country tirelessly, bringing their unparalleled versions of the world’s finest classic to cities around the world. Locally, the band has held a stable spot on the lineup of Friends of Chamber Music’s annual concert series – appearing for 18 seasons – more than any other featured player.

So it’s only fitting that Emerson travels to Denver one last time to open FCM’s 2022-23 season on Sept. 11 at the Newman Center for the Performing Arts. The members decided Mozart and Brahms was enough and Beethoven was enough; they parted ways at the end of their current tour.

This makes this FCM show a very sentimental occasion and, quite rightly, the ensemble gets romantic with its program: Mendelssohn’s Quartet No. 1; Ravel’s Quartet in F major; and Dvorak’s Quartet No. 14.

The Emerson Quartet has played a huge role in the classical music industry, practically inventing the way a quartet can come together, make music and earn a living. A host of string quartets have borrowed from Emerson’s ways, combining international touring and recording with residencies at colleges and universities.

Along the way, the group has won nine Grammy Awards and the prestigious Avery Fisher Award. They were stars on the roster of legendary classical label Deutsche Grammophon.

For the record, the current members are Eugene Drucker, violin, Philip Setzer, violin, Lawrence Dutton, viola, and Paul Watkins, cello. While the quartet disbands, the individual musicians plan to continue performing in some capacity, as well as teaching at the Emerson String Quartet Institute at Stony Brook University in New York.

Here is the rest of the 2022-23 season of Friends of Chamber Music:

Chamber Music Series:

  • November 30: the Junction trio (JCT)
  • December 14: Baritone Will Liverman
  • February 5: Skride Piano Quarter
  • March 22: violinist Leila Josefowicz
  • April 26: Pacifica Quartet, with clarinetist Anthony McGill
  • May 10: Imani Winds

Piano series:

  • October 6: Sir Andras Schiff
  • January 23: Leif Ove Andsnes

More information on the lineup can be found at To purchase tickets, call 303-871-7720 or go online at

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