Australian String Quartet

With a rich history beginning at its foundation in 1985, the Australian String Quartet (ASQ) has a strong national profile as an Australian chamber music group of excellence, performing at the highest international levels. 

Dedicated to musical excellence with a distinctly Australian flavour, they aim to create chemistry and amplify intimacy through experiences that connect people with music.

The Australian String Quartet members

The Australian String Quartet. L to R: Christopher Cartlidge (viola), Dale Barltrop (violin), Michael Dahlenburg (cello), Francesca Hiew (violin)

Since 1991 the University of Adelaide has been the ASQ’s Major Partner, a long-standing relationship that also marked the beginning of the ASQ as the University’s Quartet-in-Residence. Ffrom their headquarters right here on campus they reach out across the world to engage people with an outstanding program of performances, workshops, commissions, digital content, and education projects. 

In their position as Quartet-in-Residence, they undertake vital work on campus, providing world-class engagement opportunities for students and the wider community through a diverse annual schedule of concerts, masterclasses, open rehearsals and string musician coaching, and support innovation and research outputs in the creative and cultural sectors. Each member of the ASQ is also a Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Adelaide.

Their distinct sound is enhanced by a matched set of 18th-century Guadagnini instruments, handcrafted by Giovanni Battista Guadagnini between c.1743 and 1784 in Turin and Piacenza, Italy. These precious instruments are on loan for their exclusive use through the generosity of UKARIA.

Dale Barltrop plays a 1784 Guadagnini Violin, Turin
Francesca Hiew plays a 1748-49 Guadagnini Violin, Piacenza 
Christopher Cartlidge plays a 1783 Guadagnini Viola, Turin
Michael Dahlenburg plays a c.1743 Guadagnini Violoncello, Piacenza ‘Ngeringa’

The Australian String Quartet perform Elder Conservatorium of Music composition student Aaron Pelle’s Anhedonia and Tchaikovsky’s String Quartet No.1 in D Major in a 2022 Elder Hall Lunchtime Concert.