The venerable Juilliard String Quartet (JSQ), which celebrates its 75th anniversary this season, has named violist Molly Carr to its ensemble, filling the void left by the passing earlier this season of the quartet’s much-loved former violist Roger Tapping. Carr (BM ’09, MM ‘11) is on the Pre-College faculty at the school, and with this appointment, joins the Juilliard college faculty. She also serves on the faculties of the Manhattan School of Music and Bard College Conservatory.
“The Juilliard String Quartet has had an extraordinary impact since its founding 75 years ago. Through successive generations of musicians, the quartet has made music of every time come to life,” said Juilliard’s president Damian Woetzel. “Now, after Roger Tapping’s passing, we welcome a new voice to this continuum, Molly Carr, and it’s especially meaningful to know how she comes to this role with all of the energy and enlightenment passed on to her by Roger, who was a mentor and inspiration.”
“We are absolutely thrilled by the appointment of Molly Carr as the next violist of the Juilliard String Quartet,” said Adam Meyer, Juilliard’s provost. “Molly is a perfect fit as she embodies the values of the Juilliard String Quartet and the school in her work as a brilliant performer, experienced and dedicated teacher, and committed artist citizen. This appointment would have made Roger proud, and we are delighted to welcome her to this new role.”
Carr joins an ensemble—with violinists Areta Zhulla (Pre-College ’04; BM ’08, MM ’10) and Ronald Copes and cellist Astrid Schween (Pre-College ’80; BM ’84, MM ’85)—whose stellar reputation places it among the leading quartets worldwide. The group’s longevity—a result of its individual members’ unceasing dedication, creativity, and artistry—reaches countless fans and music lovers around the world each year, both live and through its expansive discography. The JSQ members are also devoted teachers who lead master classes, coachings, and private instruction at Juilliard, on tour, and with the fellows at the Tanglewood Music Center each summer.
“I am honored and so grateful to be joining the Juilliard String Quartet, an ensemble that I have looked up to and been inspired by my entire musical life,” Carr said. “It is such an immense privilege to be invited to follow my late mentor and friend Roger Tapping in carrying on the much-revered, decades-long traditions of this historic quartet, and having the opportunity to delve into some of the greatest music in the world on a daily basis with colleagues and friends like Areta, Ron, and Astrid is truly a dream come true. I cannot wait to get started!”
Committed to supporting the creation of invigorating new repertoire, the JSQ has a long-standing tradition of commissioning new works by composers including Lembit Beecher and Mario Davidovsky. This upcoming season brings premieres in Tucson of two quartets by the celebrated German composer Jörg Widmann—String Quartet No. 8 (Beethoven-Study III) and Cavatina—String Quartet No. 10 (Beethoven-Study V)—alongside late quartets by Beethoven. Additional highlights include the world premiere of Tyson Davis’ String Quartet No. 2, commissioned by the DaCamera of Houston and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts; concerts with Itzhak Perlman, Emanuel Ax, and Jean-Yves Thibaudet at Carnegie Hall and in Toronto and Ann Arbor; plus two tours in Europe.
Areta Zhulla, Ronald Copes, and Astrid Schween said, “After the loss of our beloved colleague and friend Roger Tapping, we are thrilled to be welcoming Molly Carr as the new violist of the Juilliard String Quartet. Molly brings to our work together fantastic collaborative energy, a deeply probing curiosity and a passion for sharing that has marked the members of the quartet through its history. We are eager to start this next chapter with her!”