Winners of the overall 2nd Prize, the Peter Druce Audience Award as well as the Musica Viva Australia Prize at the 2015 Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition, the Vienna-based Giocoso String Quartet has emerged as one of the most promising and exciting young string quartets of their generation.
Founded in 2003, the Giocoso String Quartet showed major successes early including at the Romanian National Music Competition (2003), the International Mozart Chamber Music Competition in Cluj-Napoca (2006) and the International Charles Hennen Competition in Heerlen, the Netherlands (2009). In more recent years, the ensemble has been the recipient of important chamber music prizes such as the Alban Berg Prize, Krenek Prize and Artis Prize at ISA Reichenau in Austria (2011), the HSBC Prize of the Aix-en-Provence Festival 2012 as well as the Vienna Windisch Chamber Music Prize in both 2012 and 2014.
As part of the Master Programme in Chamber Music, the group, whose members are citizens of Germany, Romania and the Netherlands, has worked extensively with the internationally renowned co-founding member of the Artis Quartet, Johannes Meissl at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna, Austria.
Furthermore, the Giocoso Quartet is a member of the renowned European Chamber Music Academy (ECMA) – led by prominent professors Hatto Beyerle and Johannes Meissl –, which has provided them with multiple international concert opportunities on top of regularly organised masterclasses with internationally renowned artists.
As such, the Giocoso String Quartet has worked with numerous important personalities of the chamber music world such as Dan Prelipcean (Voces Quartet), Hatto Beyerle and Gerhard Schulz of the Alban Berg Quartet, Eberhard Feltz, Ferenc Rados, Rainer Schmidt (Hagen Quartet), Avedis Kouyoumdjian, Andras Keller (Keller Quartet), Evgenia Epshtein (Aviv Quartet), Stefan Metz (Orlando Quartet), Shmuel Ashkenasi (Vermeer Quartet), Tim Vogler (Vogler Quartet), Sandor Devich (Bartok Quartet), Christoph Richter, Radim Sedmidubsky (Skampa Quartet) and Petr Prause (Talich Quartet).
Founded in Iasi, Romania under the guidance of the Voces Quartet, the Giocoso String Quartet regularly give acclaimed recitals all over Europe in countries like Germany, Austria, the UK, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Turkey, Romania and others. They have been guests at international chamber music festivals such as the Bordeaux and Aix-en-Provence Festival in France, the Beethoven and Kalkalpen Chamber Music Festival in Austria, the Orlando Festival in the Netherlands, the Niedersachsen Festival in Germany, to name a few.
A highlight of the 2015/2016 season saw the Giocoso String Quartet play their debut in the illustrious Wigmore Hall in London.
Furthermore, as part of the Musica Viva Australia Prize, the Giocoso String Quartet will be invited in 2016 to extensively tour Australia and New Zealand.
In 2007 they joined the “Interart”-Project and since 2011 they are scholarship holders of the Yehudi Menuhin Live-Music-Now Foundation.
All four members of the Giocoso Quartet are prizewinning musicians, admired both as soloists and as chamber music players.
Sebastian Casleanu plays a Carlo Ferdinando Landolfi violin (Milano, ± 1750-75) generously loaned to him by the German “Stiftung Musikleben” and Bas Jongen plays a Hendrik Jacobs cello (Amsterdam, ± 1696) kindly loaned to him from the collection of the Dutch Musical Instruments Foundation.