String Quartet ‘Brooklyn Rider’

The string quartet that plays the world. Brooklyn Rider.

Brooklyn Rider

Brooklyn Rider (Sarah Small)

Say string quartet and you’ll think classical. Say classical and you may think old.  Over.  But in the right hands, everything old is new again, and then some.

Take two violins, a viola, a cello.  Add the world.  Persian, Silk Road,  Bartok, Beethoven, Roma, klezmer, Minnesota, Brooklyn, Philip Glass – and you’ve got Brooklyn Rider.  The spell-casting, trail-blazing string quartet out of Brooklyn and all over.

This hour, On Point:  they’re with us live.  Brooklyn Rider and their latest album – “A Walking Fire.”

— Tom Ashbrook


The four members of Brooklyn Rider, the Brooklyn-based string quartet. Their new album, out this week, is “A Walking Fire.”

Nicholas Cords, violist.

Johnny Gandelsman, violinist.

Colin Jacobsen, violinist.

Eric Jacobsen, cellist.

Show Highlights

Live Performance for On Point

Brooklyn Rider performed live for On Point:

From Tom’s Reading List

Time Out Hong Kong: Brooklyn Rider Return! — “Ever engaging, charismatic, boundary-pushing and perspective-shifting, avant garde string quartet Brooklyn Rider are one of the most exciting names in classical music. Ahead of their return to Hong Kong – their third trip in just over 18 months – for concerts in the Premiere Performances Recital Series and PLAY! Series, we chat with the foursome, Eric Jacobsen, Colin Jacobsen, Johnny Gandelsman and Nicholas Cord, about their growing affinity to Hong Kong and their just- released new album, A Walking Fire.”

NPR Music: Kickstarting Classical Musicans, One Pledge at a Time — “After setting out to raise $30,000 to fund their latest album, Seven Steps (an excellent program that was featured in our “First Listen” series), the string quartet Brooklyn Rider attracted more than $50,000 from fans. And an open-source, non-profit project called Musopen, which is dedicated to creating copyright-free recordings, scores and other materials for the music of great masters like Beethoven, Brahms and Tchaikovsky earned more than $68,000 in funding, well outpacing the original goal of just $11,000.”

Wall Street Journal: Unlocking the Old Chamber — “Make it new!” was the battle cry with which the poet Ezra Pound pushed for a modernism that remained true to the great art of the past. It’s also the motto of Brooklyn Rider, a string quartet comprising violinists Johnny Gandelsman and Colin Jacobsen, violist Nicholas Cords and Mr. Jacobsen’s brother, Eric, on cello. The group advocates a new kind of “porous” chamber music that is open to influences from other art forms.


Brooklyn Rider’s performance for NPR Music’s Tiny Desk Concert:


Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
Nov 26, 2015
This photo taken July 31, 2012 shows a "tiny" house April Anson built in Portland, Ore. For the past couple of months, 33-year-old Anson and her friends have been planning, measuring, sawing and hammering their way toward completion of what might look like a child’s playhouse. (AP)

Tiny houses, micro-apartments. They’re hot. Americans are downsizing.

Nov 26, 2015
Jewel performs in the On Point Studio on Tuesday, September 22, 2015. (Liz Gillis / WBUR)

Singer-songwriter Jewel asked “who will save your soul”? Now she’s talking about saving her own. We’ll talk to Jewel.

Nov 25, 2015
Three of baker Renee McLeoud's delicious pies, on display in the WBUR studios. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

Bring your appetite! We’re gathering around the radio table with three chefs and new Thanksgiving recipes.

Nov 25, 2015
President Barack Obama, accompanied by Pulitzer Prize winning Iowa writer Marilynne Robinson, arrives to the State Library of Iowa in the Ola Babcock Miller Building, Monday, Sept. 14, 2015, in Des Moines. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

On the day before Thanksgiving, we talk with Marilynne Robinson – one of America’s greatest authors, thinkers, moralists — about fear and hope in a hard, frightening time.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Fresh Ideas For Your Thanksgiving: Recipes
Wednesday, Nov 25, 2015

Did our Thanksgiving 2016 episode make you hungry? Good news — we’ve got recipes right here.

More »
Karl Rove Still Won’t Get Involved In The 2016 G.O.P. Primary
Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015

Karl Rove may say he’s not endorsing or getting involved in the 2016 G.O.P. presidential primary, but that won’t stop from offering advice on how to beat Republican front runner Donald Trump.

More »
Roger Cohen And Barry Posen On ISIS
Monday, Nov 23, 2015

A brief, but illustrative exchange between Barry Posen and Roger Cohen during our conversation on ISIS today.

More »