The Estarellas Quartett, formerly called García Abril Quartett, is the winner of the International Chamber Music Competition ORPHEUS Swiss Chamber Music Competition and Kammermusikwettbewerb des Migros-Kulturprozent in 2007. Considered as one of the most outstanding Spanish-Swiss ensembles in Europe, the quartet was founded by the Spanish violinist Gabriel Estarellas Pascual in 2004.
Shostakovich’s Quartet No. 7 was the confirmation of the technical perfection of the group, which grows before a work of difficult execution. La Nueva España
The Estarellas Quartett has been regularly invited to perform concerts in most of the European countries such as: Switzerland, Italy, Spain, France, Estonia, Germany, etc… Highlighting its participation in the Cycles of concerts and international festivals: Trecastagni International Music Festival in Sicily, Festival der ORPHEUS-Konzerte in Zürich, IV Festival International de Guitare de Paris, Malaga International Music Festival, Konzertreihe Appenzeller Winter, Konzerte des Schloss Rapperswil, Les amis du conservatoire de Neuchatel, Kultur in der Klosterkirche Paradies, Winterthurer Museumkonzerte, Theater-und Konzerte-Gesellschaft Mittelthurgau, Musiksommer am Zürichsee, Abendmusik Bergün, International Festival of Santander, Kuressaare Chamber Music Days, Villa Boveri Konzerte, Konzerte Kloster Fischingen, Amriswiler Konzerte, Villa Mettlen Konzerte, International Bodenseefestival, Cycle of the CNDM Madrid, Festival de Música de Oviedo among others. The latter was their official debut in Spain, achieving great success with audiences and critics, being described by the press as a group of four exceptional young musicians.
The quartet has made numerous live recordings for radio DRS2, Espace 2 and RNE with works by J. Haydn, C. Debussy, F. Martin, A. Dvorak, etc., and a recording production for the SELLO AUTOR with works by Antón García Abril containing the quintet with piano Alba de los Caminos and Cuarteto para el nuevo milenio, CD that was very well received by the critics, qualified by the specialized magazine RITMO as magnificent the interpretations of the Estarellas Quartet and receiving the highest score, it was also nominated in 2008 for the Premios de la Música in Spain.
The interpretation of the Estarellas Quartett was accurate and moving, creating one of the greatest highlights of the Paris Festival. RITMO
As a chamber group interested in Spanish music and in the diffusion of new works, it has performed the world premieres of composers such as: G. Estarellas, R. Maldonado, R. Coinel, M. Porten, J. Hagen, J. P. Heinzer, etc. The quartet is a great connoisseur of the work of the master Antón García Abril, being in charge of the absolute premieres of the following works: Cuarteto para el Nuevo Milenio, the quartet La misteriosa forma del tiempo, the quintet with piano Alba de los caminos, the quintet with voice Rubaiyat and his song cycles for voice and quartet Canciones de noche y estrellas and Canciones del jardín secreto.
In November 2006 he made his debut at the emblematic concert hall Salle Cortot in Paris. In December 2010 he made his official presentation at the National Auditorium in Madrid, achieving great success with audiences and critics, and in February 2012 he was invited along with the international soprano Isabel Rey to the Auditorium 400 of the Reina Sofia Center in Madrid.
The Estarellas Quartett’s interpretation provoked really striking moments, leaving the audience totally amazed. The sound quality of first violin Gabriel Estarellas Pascual, is extraordinary. Landbote
The Estarellas Quartett has received the advice and lessons from masters such as: Nora Chastain, Emile Cantor (Orpheus Quartett), Thomas Demenga, etc., and has completed the Master of Chamber Music in the specialty of string quartet at the Zürcher Hochschule der Künste under the tutelage of the Carmina Quartett (Susanne Frank, Matthias Enderle and Stephan Goerner) one of the most prominent quartets on the international scene, being one of the few string quartets that receive these studies in the ZHdK.
The Estarellas Quartett collaborates assiduously in a pedagogical way with the Youth Orchestra of Thurgau (Jugendorchester Thurgau), its members being the teachers in charge of the rehearsals of the sections of the orchestra and assiduously gives courses and lessons of chamber music to young chamber music groups.
Gabriel Estarellas Pascual has conducted important orchestral ensembles such as the Sinfonieorchester St. Gallen (Switzerland), Polish Philharmonic Symphony Baltic (Poland), Rousse Philharmonic Orchestra (Bulgaria), Camerata Antonio Soler (Spain), among others. In 2008, he was appointed principal conductor and artistic director of the Jugendorchester Thurgau and in 2014 of the Orchesterverein Zürich in Switzerland. Thanks to his outstanding pedagogical and artistic activity together with the Jugendorchester Thurgau, he was awarded in 2013 with the Culture Prize of Thurgau and in 2016 he was honored with the Culture Prize of the city of Amriswil.
Throughout his musical career as a violinist and conductor he has been invited to numerous international festivals and concert series and has performed in prestigious halls such as: Auditorio Nacional de España (Madrid), Salle Cortot in Paris, etc. He has also shared the stage with renowned musicians such as: Isabel Rey, Kurt Meier, Chiara Enderle, Ilker Arcayürek, Thomas Grossenbacher, etc.
Gabriel Estarellas Pascual studied music at the Conservatorio Superior de Música de Madrid and at the Zürcher Hochschule der Künste (Switzerland) with professors Victor Martín, Rudolf Koelman and the Carmina Quartett, being given the Superior Title of Violin and Master of Chamber Music in the specialization of String Quartet. After his instrumental apprenticeship, he began postgraduate studies in the specialty of Orchestra Conductor at the Zürcher Hochschule der Künste, achieving the Diploma in Orchestral Conducting with Highest Honors, and is regularly invited to international conducting courses by Prof. Jorma Panula, Prof. Atso Almila, etc.
In 2006 she moved to Switzerland, where she collaborates assiduously with the Tonhalle Orchester Zürich and the Zürich Opera. She has been a member of the Estarellas Quartett since 2008 and of the chamber orchestra Les Musiciens du Prince (Monaco), with whom she regularly tours throughout Europe.
Currently, she shares her two great passions, concert and pedagogy, being a violin teacher at the Musikschule Region Dübendorf.
She has received scholarships from relevant institutions such as the Kiefer Hablitzel and the Bruno Schuler Foundation.
Lea Gabriela Heinzer has performed solo concerts with orchestras, recitals and chamber music concerts with different ensembles. She has been violinist of the Winterthurer Klaviertrio, with which she has made several recordings of music by the contemporary Swiss composer Josef Peter Heinzer. She has also collaborated with important musicians such as Raphael Wallfisch, Ulrich Koella, Rudolf Koelman, Michel Rouilly, Walter Grimmer, Hans-Jürg Strub, Stefan Goerner and has been invited to important music festivals.
Since its founding in 2004, Lea Gabriela Heinzer has been a member of the Estarellas Quartett, with which she has toured extensively and performed at major festivals in Switzerland and abroad. In addition, she is a winner of the ORPHEUS Swiss Chambers Music Competition and the chamber music competition of the Migros-Kulturprozent.
Since 2004, Lea Gabriela Heinzer has been a member of the Sinfonieorchester St. Gallen and a regular collaborator with the Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich. She combines her concert activity with pedagogy, being a viola teacher since 2017 at the Musikschule Weinfelden.
As a chamber musician and soloist, Olaf Krüger has been invited to important concert series and festivals in Italy, Spain, England (Cheltenham International Festival of Music), Japan and Switzerland. He collaborates regularly with important orchestral ensembles such as the Musikkollegium Winterthur and the Sinfonieorchester St. Gallen and as cellist of the St. Gallen Theater Band, he has performed in the world premieres of the musicals Moses - die 10 Gebote, Matterhorn and Wüstenblume.
Apart from his activity as a member of the Estarellas Quartett, he performs a crucial pedagogical activity, teaching cello at music centers in Wattwil, Trogen, Wil and Weinfelden. His students regularly win prizes in competitions and obtain important places for further studies at renowned conservatories and universities in Switzerland.
Audio and video
ESTARELLAS QUARTETT: Frank Martin – String Quartet
ESTARELLAS QUARTETT: Claude Debussy – String Quartet op. 10 in G minor, 1. mov.
ESTARELLAS QUARTETT: J. Haydn – String Quartet “Fifths”, 2. mov.
ESTARELLAS QUARTETT: F. Mendelssohn – String Quartet op. 13 in a minor, 3. mov.