For more than four decades, the Cascade Quartet has inspired audiences with their depth of sound and insightful interpretations. With an incredible level of artistry and an irresistible energy, the quartet draws in new and seasoned listeners through creative programming, informative and engaging interactions from the stage, education, and communicating a passion for music in all that they do.
In 1978, the Cascade Quartet was established by the Great Falls Symphony Association to fulfill its mission to bring high quality leadership to the string section of the orchestra, chamber music performances to the city of Great Falls, and further enrich the cultural experience of its residents. The resident quartet initiated the first season of the Great Falls Symphony’s Chamber Music Series and enabled the Symphony to expand its impact through many outreach and educational programs in the local schools as well as the Great Falls Youth Symphony.
Through the years, the Cascade Quartet travelled hundreds of thousands of miles, performing concerts and bringing outreach and educational opportunities to communities throughout Montana and the Northwest. Their success as string quartet has taken the group beyond the region and attracted renowned artists to Great Falls. In 1996 the Cascade Quartet was one of five ensembles selected for Chamber Music America’s Educator/Ensemble Seminar at Oberlin Conservatory, and in 1998 the quartet participated in a cultural exchange concert series with the Lethbridge Quartet from Canada. In 1999 the Cascade Quartet organized the highly successful Weekend Chamber Music Festival at the University of Great Falls, with the collaboration of the internationally renowned Ying Quartet. In 2003, the quartet collaborated with celebrated cellist Yo-Yo Ma in conjunction with his concerto performance with the Great Falls Symphony.
The Cascade Quartet also actively contributes to their field by supporting the creation of new music. Since its inception, the quartet has commissioned and premiered many works, including new pieces by Grammy nominee Philip Aaberg, MacDowell Colony Fellow Mara Gibson, and Montana's own, world renowned: David Maslanka.
Today’s Cascade Quartet includes violinists Mary Papoulis and Megan Karls, violist Christine Sherlock, and cellist Thad Suits.