The Australian String Quartet has appointed Christopher Cartlidge as its new violist. Cartlidge will leave the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, where he has been Associate Principal Viola, to take up the position. He will make his official debut with the ASQ on 21 July when he performs in the Australian String Quartet with William Barton concert at the new Illuminate Adelaide festival.

He replaces Stephen King, ASQ’s violist from 2012 to 2021, who steps into the new role of Director of Learning and Engagement.

Cartlidge studied at the Tasmanian Conservatorium of Music and the Australian Academy of Music (ANAM), where he met the ASQ’s second violinist Francesca Hiew and cellist Michael Dahlenburg (who joined the Quartet in 2020when Sharon Grigoryan left). He joined the MSO in 2011 and in 2019 was appointed Associate Principal Viola. Cartlidge is a founding member of Melbourne Ensemble. In 2015, he was a grand-finalist and multiple prize winner in the ABC Symphony Australia Young Performers Awards.

Earlier this year, he spent eight weeks with the ASQ during which time he performed as part of Adelaide Festival’s Chamber Landscapes series, and in the world premiere season of Rafael...