A new association of German string quartets is campaigning for
more ensemble residencies at the country's Musikhochschules and
universities. The Verband Deutscher
Streichquartette (German String Quartets Association), which
officially launched yesterday, has nine founder members: the Auryn,
Diogenes, Henschel, Klenke, Kuss, Leipzig, Mandelring, Minguet and
The organisation, which was initiated by the Henschel Quartet's violist Monika Henschel, claims to be the world's first association of string quartets. As well as aiming to improve working conditions for musicians, the association wants to develop teaching opportunities for professional quartets in the form of residencies at academic institutions. Unlike in the US and the UK, for example, very few German institutions have established quartets in residence.