Founding member retires from Chilingirian Quartet

Philip de Groote to leave ensemble he set up

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Cellist Philip de Groote, one of the founding members of the Chilingirian Quartet, has announced his retirement from the group after 40 years.

De Groote founded the Chilingirian quartet in 1971 with violinist Levon Chilingirian. The quartet celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2012 and is active in the international music scene, having toured over 50 countries in six continents, as well as being quartet-in-residence at the Royal College of Music in London.

Cellist Stephen Orton will join the Chilingirians as De Groote’s replacement.

Yorkshire born Orton studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and has been principal cello with the Bournemouth Sinfonietta and City of London Sinfonia and a member of the Delmé Quartet for ten years.

‘I am really pleased to be joining the Chilingirian Quartet and returning to the Quartet repertoire which I've always loved,’ said Orton. ‘I want to wish Philip all the best in his retirement, he is a hard act to follow and I'm sure we'll see him in the future.’

De Groote studied with Eileen Croxford at the Royal College of Music, and went on to have a career as a soloist and teacher at the Royal College of Music and the University of Cape Town.

The quartet will be performing at the Llandeilo Fawr and Petworth Festivals, the Bournemouth Chamber Music Society, as well as at a series of concerts at London’s Kings Place.

Maya Dudok de Wit