Its name derived from creation mythology found in Native American Folklore, the Turtle Island Quartet, since its inception in 1985, has been a singular force in the creation of bold, new trends in chamber music for strings. Winner of the 2006 and most recently, the 2008 Grammy Award for Best Classical Crossover Album, Turtle Island fuses the classical quartet esthetic with contemporary American musical styles, and by devising a performance practice that honors both, the state of the art has inevitably been redefined. Cellist nonpareil Yo-Yo Ma has proclaimed TIQ to be “a unified voice that truly breaks new ground – authentic and passionate – a reflection of some of the most creative music-making today.” Read more.

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New CD and video!

Take a look at Turtle Island’s new video. We play the John Carisi tune, Israel from our “Birth Of The Cool” program and new CD, “Confetti Man” on Azica Records. CD is available here!



Color Throws, Krishna Temples, 50,000 Mormons…So, what did you do this weekend? 

David had quite an exciting weekend, performing for a crowd of about 50,000 at the Holi Festival in Utah. He performed with some musician friends, who are in a group called Mukti– a Sanskrit word for “liberation.” Quite appropriate for this festival – check out this photo below and click here to read more.

The Color Throw at the Holi Festival in Utah


Check out the Turtles at Luna Studio! 

Turtle Island Quartet is debuting a new collaborative program with the amazing dance company Luna Negra. We met up recently for some rehearsals in advance of the show at the Harris Theater in Chicago on March 9.


West Coast Live Welcomes the Turtles ! 

Turtles on West Coast Live with Sedge Thomson On the day of the Turtle Island Quartet’s performance at the Freight & Salvage Coffee House, the Turtles stopped by Yoshi’s Oakland  to be featured on West Coast Live. Hear them perform live, and talk to Sedge Thomson about ice cellos, Stéphane Grappelli, and more!






Turtle Island Quartet on North Country Public Radio!

David Balakrishnan talks about Jimi Hendrix, being “alternative” and TIQ’s collaboration with Luna Negra…

Listen Here! 







NEW BLOG POST :  The Turtles Vacation All Over the World! 

David visited this meditative retreat to prepare for the upcoming Turtle tour!

As the Turtles come together for another year of concerts, collaborations and extensive travel, we thought it would be fun to let you know what we’ve doing, and where we’ve been during the winter vacation between the end of our concert season mid-December until the beginning of the new year. From California to Poland to Germany, the Turtles have been resting up all over the globe for our upcoming tour.  Click here to read more about our winter respite…

More Blog Posts…

Tierney Sutton and the Turtle Island Quartet

Turtle Island Quartet recently premiered a new program, “Poets and Prayers” with our friend and collaborator, jazz singer Tierney Sutton, at the Lobero Theater in Santa Barbara, California. Tierney is a three-time Grammy Nominee for “Best Jazz Vocal Album” and a selection by Jazzweek as Vocalist of the Year, in 2005. I had been e-mailing her for several years to try and make this program a reality. Tierney and the Turtles had agreed… Read More