The Quatuor Debussy is noted for the breadth of its repertory, which features not only French music (including its namesake's sole quartet but also less familiar French music such as that of Romantic composer Joseph-Ermend Bonnal), but also the Shostakovich quartets, which it has recorded as a cycle, German and Austrian music, American contemporary works, and music for children. The group has a substantial discography, mostly on the Arion and Evidence labels. The Quatuor Debussy, or Debussy Quartet, was formed in 1990 by a group of students at the Lyon Conservatory. The group's membership of violinists Christophe Collette and Marc Viellefon, violist Vincent Deprecq, and cellist Cédric Conchon remained constant for many years until Viellefon was replaced by Emmanuel Bernard in the late 2010s. With a win at the Evian International String Quartet Competition, the Quatuor Debussy began to attract bookings in top concert halls, including the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Louvre in Paris, the Konzerthaus in Berlin, and more, and the group is a regular guest on the European festival circuit. The quartet formed its own chamber music festival and academy, Les Cordes en Ballade, where it continues to teach regularly. The Quatuor Debussy has collaborated with various artists in mixed chamber works, and, more unusually, with the Compagnie Käfig modern dance ensemble, with not only its music but also the member's movements being incorporated into choreographed works. By 1995, the Quatuor Debussy began its recording career with an album of quartets by George Onslow, Charles Dancla, and Pierre Rode on the Valois label. The group has also recorded for Arion (a series of recordings of obscure French works), Decca (as part of a recording of an 1802 transcription of Mozart's Requiem), and most recently, Evidence. The quartet's complete cycle of Shostakovich quartets was maintained as it switched from Arion to Evidence. In 2018, the Quatuor Debussy was heard on the classical-jazz crossover release Claude Debussy: ...et le jazz - Preludes for a Quartet, on Harmonia Mundi, and the quartet has released three albums of music for children in France. The group returned in 2021 on Evidence with a recording of the quartet version of Haydn's Seven Last Words of Christ on the Cross, intertwined with a contemporary work by Dominique Vellard of similar inspiration.
© James Manheim /TiVo
© James Manheim /TiVo