Classical music for the young and hip
The Riders have a cool name, snappy style, and their music is as close to rockin' as you can get with two violins, a viola, and a cello. No wonder their New York fanbase is mainly made up of young folks. Bringing classical music to a new audience and new venues is an essential part of their mission.
But older people like it too
The string quartet — composed of Colin and Eric Jacobsen, Nicholas Cords, and Johnny Gandelsman — has a talent for paying homage to historic classical music while approaching it with a modern hand. This attitude results in a diverse fanbase. "We love the fact that we can play a bar downtown and 70- to 80-year-olds will show up with 20-year-olds," Eric Jacobsen says. "And we love that when we play somewhere formal, 20-year-olds and people in their teens will show up and listen to it with the older generation of music lovers. What an honor to get to play for people who know the repertoire so well and play the music for people who don't and are first experiencing this music."
They're tight with Yo-Yo
Yo-Yo Ma, that is. The Grammy-winning cellist has been a huge influence on each member of Brooklyn Rider. As members of Ma's Silk Road Ensemble, they've had the opportunity to play in major concert halls around the world and record three albums for Sony Classical. "Yo-Yo Ma is a hero of all of ours, and he's able to bring wild worlds together," Jacobsen says. "He's a force of nature. His ability to see so far into the future as a visionary definitely inspires us in our programming, in everything."