String Quintet

of the
WDR Symphony Orchestra Cologne

The Quintet

  • Ye Wu | violin
  • Cristian Suvaiala | violin
  • Mischa Pfeiffer | viola
  • Tomasz Neugebauer | viola
  • Susanne Eychmüller | cello

A string Quintet with two violas was once standard in the 17th century. Many great composers have written masterpieces for this formation. These five musicians from WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln, one of the leading European Orchestras, decided to draw their inspiration from years of devoted chamber music experience and their culturally diverse backgrounds.

Since their debut performance in 2016, WDR Chamber Players came to prominence in a 2017 tour across China which proved hugely successful. Their debut CD of Johannes Brahms String Quintets was released in April 2017 by Pentatone and was awarded the International magazine Diapason’s “Diapason D’or” prize.

Enthusiastic responses from audiences and critics have encouraged the ensemble to continue their path. Through live concerts and radio broadcast, the Chamber Players continues to realise their goal of sharing their passion for music with the listeners.

"Distinguished for their unified sound, colorful tone of expression and energetic intensity, the WDR Chamber Players manage to seamlessly combine symphonic scale with the intimacy of chamber music."
"They give an infinite sensuality to the abundant lyricism, finding everywhere refined colours and a dynamic without gravity."

2020 is proving a productive year for the ensemble. Following the release of a new Album with two of the Beethoven String Quintets, they fell deeply in love with Max Bruch’s seldom performed Chamber works. They have recorded his two string quintets and will soon embark on his penultimate work, the string octet.

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Upcoming concerts

02 May | 11:00

Funkhaus: Grosse Sendesaal more

Program: M.Bruch - String Quintet E flat Major, M.Glinka - Grand Sextet, J.Widmann - 180 beats per minute for String Sextet, E.W.Korngold - String Sextet in D Major op. 10

Guests: Haiou Zhang - piano, Stanislav Anischenko - Double Bass

Location: Wallrafplatz 5, 50667 Köln

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23 May | 17:00

Öschberghof more

Program: M.Bruch - String Quintet in E flat Major, W.A.Mozart - String Quintett in G minor KV 516, M. Glinka - Grand Sextet

Guests: Haiou Zhang - piano, Stanislav Anischenko - Double Bass

Location: Golfplatz 1, 78166 Donaueschingen

15 Oct | 20:00

Center of Performing Arts

16 Oct | 20:00


17 Oct | 20:00

tba more

Program: tba

Location: tba, tba Shenzhen

All concerts

Our Recordings

Beethoven CD Cover Photo

We are very excited about our newly released CD by Alpha-Classics. It features the rare and precious string quintets op.29 and op.104 as well as the short fuge op.137 by Ludwig van Beethoven. It is our own contribution to Beethovens' 250th birthday. We hope you enjoy it!

Here are some early reviews:

The WDR Chamber Players make use of this strong music and offer gripping interpretations. With virtuoso freshness and powerful gestures, they fascinate the listener in both quintets as well as in the only two-minute long Fugue op. 137.

Brahms CD Cover Photo

Our first CD was released in April 2017 for the Pentatone label. It features both string quintets of Johannes Brahms and was awarded with the prestigious Diapason d'Or Award by the french music mag Diapason.

Here some reviews:

Those musicians from the WDR Symphony of Cologne find the charm, the abandonment and the poetry (...).They give an infinite sensuality to the abundant lyricism, finding everywhere refined colours and a dynamic without gravity.

There is something slightly mystical about the string quintet, with its extra layer of harmony added to the more familiar two violins, viola and cello quartet line up. This recording is an eloquent statement of the finest Romantic chamber music.

The Sunday Herald


Ludwig van Beethoven - String Quintet op. 104 in c Minor
Live! from Cologne Philharmonic Hall:

Johannes Brahms - String Quintet op. 111 in G Major
Live! from Cologne Philharmonic Hall:

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