Brooklyn Rider is a Brooklyn, NY based string quartet whose members include violinists Johnny Gandelsman and Colin Jacobsen, violist Nicholas Cords and cellist Eric Jacobsen. They are mainly known for playing unusual and contemporary repertoire, and for collaborating with musicians from outside the classical music sphere. The quartet has also founded the Stillwater Music Festival in 2006 to serve as a place to unveil new repertory and collaborations. Brooklyn Rider also spends time teaching, including past residencies at Denison University, Dartmouth College, Williams College, MacPhail Center for the Arts, Texas A&M University and University of North Carolina.
Past performances have included evenings at the Schwartz Center (Atlanta, GA), the Kimmel Center, the Cologne Philharmonie, American Academy in Rome, Spoleto Festival USA, and Malmö Festival in Sweden. In 2010, the quartet was invited to play at the SXSW Festival in Austin, TX, which was also broadcast live on NPR. They are the only classical performers to have been invited to play at the festival to date. Brooklyn Rider made their Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall debuts in 2011.
Brooklyn Rider's first recording, "Passport", released in 2008, was selected by NPR as one of their best classical albums of that year. 2008 also saw the release a collaborative album with kamancheh player Kayhan Kalhor titled "Silent City". They released "Dominant Curve" in 2010, which was featured on All Songs Considered and named in NPR's best music of 2010 so far list.
Brooklyn Rider was chosen by the noted American composer Philip Glass to record his complete string quartets in 2011, which also included the world premiere recording of his Bent suite. Their most recent album, "Seven Steps", was named to NPR's listener's choice best of 2012 so far list.
In spring 2013 the ensemble announced a new recording partnership with Universal's Mercury Classics label. The first album, A Walking Fire, was released in the US on CD and iTunes on April 30th.
On August 13, 2013, banjo player Béla Fleck released a CD called "The Impostor" on the Deutsche Grammophon / Mercury Classics label (AMG Classical ID W 303049) which includes the title piece as a concerto for banjo and symphony orchestra, followed by a piece entitled "Night Flight Over Water", a composition for banjo and string quartet featuring Brooklyn Rider.
"The Brooklyn Rider Almanac" on Mercury Classics was released in September 2014.