Music benefactor Avery Fisher didn't take quartets into consideration when he established the prestigious classical music prize in his name in 1974.

Music benefactor Avery Fisher didn't take quartets into consideration when he established the prestigious classical music prize in his name in 1974.

Recipients of the Avery Fisher Prize include cellist Yo-Yo Ma, the violinist Midori and pianists Emanuel Ax and Andre Watts.

Now, for the first time in the history of the award presented by Lincoln Center, the winner is a chamber-music ensemble. The Emerson String Quartet -- violinists Philip Setzer and Eugene Drucker, violist Lawrence Dutton and cellist David Finckel -- are getting it today (April 12).

They will share the $50,000 prize.


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