Violinist John Sherba and violist Hank Dutt will leave the quartet at the end of June, following the group’s historic 50th anniversary season


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Violinist John Sherba and violist Hank Dutt

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Kronos Performing Arts Association (KPAA) has announced that longtime members John Sherba (violin) and Hank Dutt (viola) will retire from the ensemble. Dutt joined Kronos in 1977; he and founding violinist David Harrington recruited Sherba to join the group in 1978. 

The Kronos Quartet will enter its sixth decade with two new members: violinist Gabriela Díaz and violist Ayane Kozasa will join Harrington and cellist Paul Wiancko, who joined the group in 2023.

’It is a dream come true to have been involved in the birth of so many important compositions, to have experienced all the major halls and their audiences, to have performed with an astonishing array of guest artists, to have worked with our amazing manager, Janet Cowperthwaite, our staff, and our KPAA board, to have made many recordings, and most importantly, to have been surrounded by the incredible Kronos players, past and present,’ said violinist Sherba. ’I can’t believe I am approaching 70! I have decided, with a lot of contemplation, to free up my calendar, retire from Kronos, spend more time with my family, and spontaneously pursue my many other passions.’

’I cannot imagine a career more artistically rewarding than the past 47 years I have spent with the Kronos Quartet,’ said violist Dutt. ’Every day has been an adventure with a steady stream of collaborations with new composers, new musicians, and old friends.  But for every thing there is a season. Having celebrated Kronos’ 50th anniversary, I feel now is the moment for me to step back and let a violist from the next generation further the Kronos tradition. I am looking forward to the next chapter of my life in music.’

’Words can hardly express the depth of gratitude and appreciation I feel for the immense energy, dedication, and single-minded devotion Hank and John have given Kronos every day during all of these years,’ said Harrington. ’Their expertise, good cheer and friendship have been at the heart of all of our work. I wish them everything good in their onward journeys.

’And now Paul and I happily welcome Gabriela and Ayane to the Kronos family! We are inspired and thrilled by the imagination, skill, and bold ideas that they will bring to the future work of Kronos. This next chapter will be full of big adventures – stay tuned!’

Between now and the end of June, Sherba and Dutt will perform more than 20 shows with Harrington and cellist Wiancko. They will give their final performances with the group at the ninth annual Kronos Festival, 20 to 23 June 2024 at the SFJAZZ Center in the group’s hometown, San Francisco.


Violinist Gabriela Díaz and violist Ayane Kozasa

A fierce champion of contemporary music, Gabriela Díaz has worked closely with many significant composers on their own compositions. She is the concertmaster of the Boston Modern Orchestra Project (BMOP), and a member of the International Contemporary Ensemble and A Far Cry. Díaz teaches at Wellesley College and the Longy School of Music at Bard College, and is the co-artistic director of the chamber music and outreach organisation Winsor Music.

Violist Ayane Kozasa was a founding member of the award-winning Aizuri Quartet, which she belonged to for eleven years. A winner of the Primrose International Viola Competition, she has commissioned multiple new works featuring the viola. Currently, she is a member of the duo Ayane & Paul with Paul Wiancko. Active in mentoring young musicians, she is on the viola faculty of the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, and has been guest faculty at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and Northwestern University.

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