Ulysses Quartet

photo: Lara St. John

"With this recording – one of this year’ best – the superb Ulysses Quartet offers a definitive reading of a twentieth century masterpiece."

All About the Arts

The Ulysses Quartet has been praised for their “textural versatility,” “grave beauty,” and “the kind of chemistry many quartets long for, but rarely achieve” (The Strad), as well as their “avid enthusiasm … [with] chops to back up their passion” (San Diego Story), “delivered with a blend of exuberance and polished artistry” (The Buffalo News).

Founded in the summer of 2015, the group won the grand prize and gold medal in the senior string division of the 2016 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition and first prize in the 2018 Schoenfeld International String Competition. In 2017, the quartet finished first in the American Prize and won second prize at the Osaka International Chamber Music Competition. They were winners of the Vietnam International Music Competition in 2019, and garnered a career development grant in the 2016 Banff International String Quartet Competition.

Consisting of violinists Christina Bouey and Rhiannon Banerdt, violist Colin Brookes, and cellist Grace Ho, the quartet’s members hail from Canada, the United States, and Taiwan. They have performed in such prestigious halls as Carnegie Hall, the Harbin Grand Theatre, Jordan Hall, and the Taiwan National Recital Hall. Other notable engagements have included the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Alice Tully Hall, Buffalo Chamber Music Society, the Chautauqua Institution (New York), National Gallery of Art (Washington DC), Music Mountain (Connecticut), Premiere Performances Hong Kong, National Arts Centre (Ottawa), Fundación Juan March (Madrid), Wigmore Hall (London), Basel Kammermusik, Sociedad Filarmónica de Bilbao, Teatro Mayor Julio Mario Santo Domingo (Bogotá), and Cemal Reşit Rey Concert Hall (Istanbul).

At Juilliard from 2019 to 2022, they were the Lisa Arnhold Fellows, serving as the school’s Graduate Resident String Quartet for three years. From 2016 to 2019, Ulysses was in residence at the Louis Moreau Institute in New Orleans, working with composer Morris Rosenzweig.

The group’s name pays homage to Homer’s hero Odysseus and his 10-year voyage home. The Ulysses Quartet believes intensely in the power of music to inspire, enlighten, and bring people together. This is the guiding principle of the Ulysses Quartet Foundation, dedicated to the performance and promotion of classical music of the past and present day to benefit the broadest possible audience of music lovers and potential music lovers by expanding their understanding and appreciation of the musical arts. As part of this effort, the quartet has created an ongoing series of music videos with filmmaker Michael Sinicropi to bring their repertoire to life. Ulysses aims to use this platform to raise the voices of underrepresented BIPOC and female composers. 

The members of Ulysses hold degrees from the Juilliard School, Manhattan School of Music, New England Conservatory, Boston Conservatory, Yale University, and University of North Texas. The musicians perform on instruments and bows graciously on loan from the Maestro Foundation and private donors. Ulysses is grateful for the support of Shar Music and Connolly Music as Young Strings of America ambassadors.


Shades of Romani Folklore

Release Date: October 13, 2023
Catalog Number: NV6567
20th Century
String Quartet
What happens when you fuse the power of Beethoven, the raw emotion of Janáček, and the exoticism of Frucht with a beautifully exuberant string ensemble? The Ulysses Quartet gives a definitive answer on SHADES OF ROMANI FOLKLORE, an album exploring the rich and vibrant tradition of Romani music. Each composer, who lived centuries apart from one another, drew on this wellspring of inspiration in a unique way, producing music that is deeply personal yet informed by the Romani style and spirit, and the Ulysses Quartet translates their creations with arresting artistry and pin-point accuracy.