The Lotus Quartet was founded three decades ago in Tokyo in 1992, and has been based in Stuttgart for many years. It is now something of a special phenomenon in several respects: as one of the few all-female ensembles on the international quartet scene, it has been playing with essentially consistent members for a particularly long time. The characteristic synthesis of cultural influences from Japan and Germany have become even more pronounced since the violinist Swantje Tauscher (second violin) joined the quartet in 2022, and who is also first concertmaster with the Philharmonisches Orchester Freiburg orchestra.
The ensemble’s recordings of selected works by Mozart and contemporary Japanese composers (1997 and 2000 respectively on the Teldec label) and a recording of little-known quartets by Johann Baptist Vanhal (2014 on the cpo label) have garnered particular praise. The musicians won the 3rd prize at the chamber music competition in Osaka as far back as 1993. A scholarship enabled them to participate in master classes held by the Amadeus and Melos Quartets, and they studied with the Melos Quartet in Stuttgart from 1995, quickly achieving some major successes in prominent competitions.
The Lotus Quartet soon established itself as a guest of major chamber music series and leading festivals. The ensemble has made an annual guest appearance in Darmstadt since 1998, where it performed a complete Beethoven cycle, and series with works by Mozart, Schubert, Schumann and Brahms followed. In 2017, the Lotus Quartet performed a Beethoven cycle in Japan, followed by performances of Beethoven's late quartets in several Japanese cities in 2018. The ensemble's 30th anniversary tour in February 2023 will culminate in a performance of six quartets by Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy.