Quatuor Ébène (Ébène Quartet) is a French string quartet based in Boulogne-Billancourt, France.
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Quatuor Ébène was founded in 1999 at the Boulogne-Billancourt Conservatory in France. The group first came to international attention in 2004 when it won first prize in the string quartet category at the ARD International Music Competition, also taking the Audience Prize, two prizes for interpretation, and the Karl Klinger Foundation Prize. The following year, the group won the Belmont Prize from the Forberg-Schneider Foundation. In 2006, Quatuor Ébène released its first recording, a live recording of 3 Hayden quartets, to critical acclaim. In 2009, the quartet was named "Newcomer of the Year" by BBC Music Magazine for its recording of the Ravel, Fauré, and Debussy string quartets. The same album won the group Recording of the Year at the 2009 Classic FM Gramophone Awards. In 2010, the group was named Ensemble of the Year at the Victoires de la Musique Classique.NPR named Ébène's "Fiction" album one of its 50 favorite albums of 2011, describing the quartet's performance as brimming with "silky smoothness and Gallic finesse."
The group is known for its versatility and performs a variety of genres, such as classical music, contemporary music, jazz, and crossover. Beyond its classical repertoire, some of the group's most popular performances have been crossover, such a rendition of the music from the score of Pulp Fiction, arrangements of classic Beatles hits, and a jazz vocal/instrumental arrangement of "Someday My Prince Will Come" from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.
New York Times music critic Allan Kozinn highlighted the group's versatility, describing the group as "a string quartet that can easily morph into a jazz band."
Pierre Colombet, violin,
Gabriel Le Magadure, violin,
Mathieu Herzog, viola,
Raphaël Merlin, violoncello