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The Berlin Oboe Quartet - The Berlin Oboe Quartet - Phantasy
The Berlin Oboe Quartet
Costa Records
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An exciting release of contemporary British repertoire from The Berlin Oboe Quartet
features Colin Matthews’ 1st and 2nd Oboe Quartets in the year of his 70th birthday.
Framed by classics of the oboe quartet repertoire, the Phantasy Op. 2 by Benjamin Britten
and the Quartet for oboe and string trio by Richard Rodney Bennett, the CD also presents
the first recording of Helen Grime’s Oboe Quartet, written in 2011. The Berlin Oboe
Quartet have always been inspired in their choice of repertoire by Benjamin Britten’s
masterful Phantasy. Early on in their concert career they took the decision to make British
oboe quartets central to their concert programming and took the Phantasy as their starting
point. One composer with whom The Berlin Oboe Quartet have had a special relationship
for many years is Colin Matthews, having championed his Oboe Quartet No. 1 in the
1980’s. After hearing their performances of this first work, Colin Matthews offered to write a
second quartet for the ensemble, which they premiered in The Purcell Room, London in
1990. The Berlin Oboe Quartet are also lucky enough to have known and worked with
Richard Rodney Bennett. They were invited to play his Quartet for oboe and string trio at
his 50th birthday celebrations, and performed this work regularly from then on. It was
therefore natural that it should be included on this CD. Always looking for new works to
add to the oboe quartet repertoire, The Berlin Oboe Quartet were particularly excited to get
to know the Oboe Quartet by Helen Grime. This thrilling work by a young British composer
makes a fitting addition to a disc which traces the history of this genre over nearly 80

1 Benjamin Britten Phantasy Op. 2
2 Colin Matthews Oboe Quartet No. 1
3 Helen Grime Oboe Quartet
4 Colin Matthews Oboe Quartet No. 2
5 Richard Rodney Bennett Quartet for oboe and string trio