Lindsay Quartet (Peter Cropper; Ronald Birks; Robin Ireland; Bernard Gregor-Smith)

Lindsay Quartet (Peter Cropper; Ronald Birks; Robin Ireland; Bernard Gregor-Smith), by György Gordon, 2003 - NPG 6649 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

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Lindsay Quartet (Peter Cropper; Ronald Birks; Robin Ireland; Bernard Gregor-Smith)

by György Gordon
oil on canvas, 2003
27 1/2 in. x 39 3/8 in. (700 mm x 1001 mm)
Commissioned, 2003
Primary Collection
NPG 6649

Sittersback to top

  • Ronald Birks (1945-), Violinist; member of The Lindsay String Quartet. Sitter in 1 portrait.
  • Peter Cropper (1945-2015), Violinist; member of The Lindsay String Quartet. Sitter in 1 portrait.
  • Bernard Gregor-Smith (1945-), Cellist; member of The Lindsay String Quartet. Sitter in 1 portrait.
  • Robin Ireland (1954-), Violist; member of the Lindsay String Quartet. Sitter in 1 portrait.

Artistback to top

  • György Gordon (1924-2005), Artist and teacher. Artist of 1 portrait, Sitter in 1 portrait.

This portraitback to top

One of the world's foremost string quartets, the Lindsays are rooted in the European tradition of quartet playing and celebrated for the intensity of their interpretation. In their hometown of Sheffield they inspired their own Chamber Music Festival where they perform in the round in an informal and intimate atmosphere. Their discography includes the complete cycles of Bartok, Beethoven and the string quartets of Sir Michael Tippett. Born in Hungary, György Gordon trained at the Hungarian Academy of Art, Budapest and fled to England during the 1956 uprising. Gordon has known the Lindsays since the mid-1980s and has been a regular at their concerts ever since. The occasion is a rehearsal for the Russian Festival, which took place at the Sheffield Crucible in spring 2002.

Events of 2003back to top

Current affairs

Biological weapons expert, David Kelly commits suicide after being questioned by the government over allegations that the Iraq weapons dossier had been 'sexed-up' by the government. The Hutton Inquiry into Kelly's death concluded that he had taken his own life and that the BBC's claim was unfounded, leading to the Director General's resignation. No stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction were found in Iraq after the 2003 invasion.

Art and science

England wins the Rugby World Cup in the final against Australia. The match was exceptionally close with Australia equalising with just two and a half minutes of extra time remaining. 21 seconds before the end of the match, England's fly-half Jonny Wilkinson scored a drop-goal, winning the match and the tournament.


America leads an invasion of Iraq after accusing the country of building Weapons of Mass Destruction. Initial success was achieved with the toppling of Saddam Hussein's government and George Bush's declaration of the end of major conflict - 'Mission Accomplished' - within two months of the invasion. The conflict, however, was not over, and British and American troops continued fighting with insurgents to stabilise the country.

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