Cecily Ward, violin
Tom Stone, violin
Ethan Filner, viola
Jennifer Kloetzel, cello

READ: A Farewell Letter from the Cypress String Quartet

Cypress String Quartet Biography

In their 20 years on the concert stage, the four members of the San Francisco-based Cypress String Quartet (CSQ) played thousands of concerts together throughout North America, Europe, Asia and Latin America. Praised by Gramophone for their “artistry of uncommon insight and cohesion,” and by the NY Times for “tender, deeply expressive” interpretations, they recorded over 15 albums and are heard regularly on hundreds of radio stations throughout the world. They have also been heard on the Netflix original series “House of Cards,” and they collaborated with leading artists ranging from Michael Franti of Spearhead to modern dance companies.

“This young quartet is among the most impressive I have heard in modern sound “
– Stereophile (reviewing CSQ’s “Beethoven: The Late String Quartets”)

Our Performance

Since its inception, the CSQ created a niche in the world arts community as one of the most passionate, insightful, and innovative ensembles of our time. Whether performing for seasoned concert-goers or people being exposed to classical music for the first time, the CSQ had a unique ability to articulate what was enthralling about the masterpieces they performed.

Our Commissions

In addition to definitive interpretations of masters such as Beethoven, Mozart and Schubert, the CSQ commissioned some of the most important composers of our time including Kevin Puts, Philippe Hersant, Jennifer Higdon, George Tsontakis, and Elena Ruehr.

“The Cypress brought a combination of tenderness and urgency to the music, expertly rendering the piece’s delicate weave.” -San Francisco Chronicle (reviewing the world premiere of composer George Tsontakis’s String Quartet No.5)

Our Background

CSQ members were educated at the world’s most prestigious conservatories including the Juilliard School, the Royal College of Music and Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, Indiana University-Bloomington, and the Eastman School of Music. Early in their musical career, the CSQ mentored with members of the Amadeus Quartet in London.

Our Education programs

Dedicated to mentoring and training the next generation of exceptionally talented individuals, the CSQ was visiting artist at Harvard, MIT, Stanford, University of California Berkeley and other elite universities. The CSQ’s passion for sharing music extended far beyond classrooms and concert halls to non-traditional venues such as boardrooms, art galleries, and private residences. By combining passionate performances and lively discussion, the CSQ created unforgettable experiences for those fortunate enough to participate. At the heart of all CSQ residencies was the belief that music enriches learning and living.

Our Instruments

The members of the Cypress Quartet played exceptional instruments including violins by Antonio Stradivari (1681) and Carlos Bergonzi (1733), a viola by Vittorio Bellarosa (1947), and a cello by Hieronymus Amati II (1701). The Cypress Quartet had taken its name from the set of twelve love songs for string quartet, Cypresses, by Antonin Dvořák.