San Francisco's Home for Great Concerts since 1970

Friction Quartet – Friday, May 20 at 8 pm



Friction Quartet

Doug Machiz, cello
Otis Harriel, violin
Kevin Rogers, violin
Mitso Floor, viola

George Gershwin Lullaby
Mario Godoy Attention Economy
Bedřich Smetana String Quartet No. 1 “From my Life”

Friction Quartet, whose performances have been called “stunningly passionate” (Calgary Herald) and “exquisitely skilled” (ZealNYC), exists to modernize the chamber music experience and expand the string quartet repertoire. Friction achieves this mission by commissioning new works, curating imaginative programs, collaborating with artists, and presenting interactive educational outreach. Joshua Kosman (San Francisco Chronicle) declared that Friction Quartet is, “The Bay Area’s redoubtable new-music ensemble.” This performance features a work by Mario Godoy, commissioned by Friction Quartet, alongside works by George Gerswhin and Bedřich Smetana.

Since forming in 2011, Friction has commissioned fifty works for string quartet and given countless world premiere performances. To support their mission of commissioning new music, they developed the Friction Commissioning Initiative to work together with their audience to fund specific commissions. Since 2017, they have raised $20,000 that has funded eleven new works, including five by young composers between the ages of sixteen and twenty-one. In the past few years, they have been awarded commissioning grants from Chamber Music America and Intermusic SF. They have received additional grant support from IntermusicSF, Zellerbach Family Foundation, and the California Arts Council.

Friction has held residencies at the New Music for Strings Festival in Denmark, Interlochen Arts Camp, Lunenburg Academy of Music, Napa Valley Performing Arts Center, Old First Concerts, San Francisco Friends of Chamber Music, and was the first ensemble in residence at the Center for New Music. They are ensemble educators with San Francisco Symphony’s Adventures in Music Program, KDFC Playground Pop Ups, and more.

Friction appears on recordings with National Sawdust Tracks, Innova Records, Albany Records, and Pinna Records. Their recent albums include Rising, featuring three commissioned quartets about the changing climate and the landscapes of California, and Counter Paint, a collaborative multimedia project created by Pascal Le Boeuf and Danny Clay. They released their full-length debut album, resolve, in 2018.

Friction Quartet won Second Prize in the 2016 Schoenfeld Competition, were quarter-finalists in the 2015 Fischoff Competition, and placed second at the 2015 Frances Walton Competition.

Old First Concerts has volunteer opportunities available!

Our concerts rely on the generosity of volunteers to assist with simple tasks like:


distributing programs

box office

set-up and clean-up

Scheduling is flexible — you choose when to work! We especially need helping hands for our Friday and Saturday night performances.

An excellent opportunity for students, seniors, or anyone who possesses a love for music!

If you’d like to consider volunteering with Old First Concerts, please contact for more information.