Echoes of an Ensemble: The Alexander String Quartet

Echoes of an Ensemble follows the Alexander String Quartet performing throughout Poland. It reveals the tradition of chamber music and the collective voice that emerges through the unique personalities of these four world-class musicians.

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Director Biography

Robert is an independent filmmaker with experience in documentary and fiction filmmaking. He is interested in exploring the relationship that exists between the filmmaker and the documentary subject. Further, his films look to explore ideas and intersections of the contemporary American experience.

In both his fiction and documentary filmmaking Robert enjoys working behind the camera as a cinematographer and in the post-production studio as an editor. Robert serves as the Associate Director for the Documentary Film Institute at San Francisco State University. In addition, he serves as the Production Manager for the Veteran Documentary Corps (VDC). Robert earned his M.F.A in filmmaking from San Francisco State University and his B.A. in Film Studies from California State University, Sacramento.

Many of Robert’s films have screened online (hulu & the Pentagon Channel) and are in distribution through educational distributor, Kanopy. His films have also screened in theatres and art exhibitions in Sacramento and San Francisco, including the historical Castro Theatre.

57 Responses to “Echoes of an Ensemble: The Alexander String Quartet”

  1. Fred Lifsitz says:

    Fabulous film. So real.

  2. Michael A. Behrens says:

    This film is excellent!

  3. Robert Aguirre says:

    great to get some insight on how the music comes to life! very very interesting.

  4. Marisa Viloria says:


  5. Norma D says:

    Great film documentary on the Alexander String Quartet. How fortunate our students have to have these artists in residence. I worked in the college of creative arts when the film department was established and the film is indicative of the outstanding faculty in the department/college.

  6. Norma Siani says:

    A top-notch documentary by Mr, Barbarino showing the outstanding Alexander String Quartet. How fortunate and what a gem San Francisco State University has in having these superior faculty on the staff.

  7. Michelle Santa Maria says:

    Inspirational. As a teacher in the public school system where the arts program is so neglected, I plan on showing your film to my students. I have students from underprivileged homes who have found refuge in learning to play an instrument. May your love and dedication to collaborative music be an inspiration to our youth. Bravo!

  8. Dennis Slavin says:

    Wonderful film!

  9. Julia Trubikhina says:

    Excellent musicians, wonderful film!

  10. Anonymous says:

    great film!

  11. Excellent film that shows the essence behind great string quartet playing.

  12. Rhond says:

    Great insight into the history of classical music and modern day musicians passion to keep the music alive for today’s audiences.

  13. Ashley Devine says:


  14. Katarina Polcari says:

    Beautiful documentary of a beautiful a musical journey. Bravo!

  15. Scott Daley says:

    Great video. Loved watching it!

  16. Richard Links says:

    Absolutely fantastic!

  17. Anonymous says:

    Fabulous. engaging

  18. Anonymous says:

    Thumbs up!

  19. Shinji Eshima says:


  20. Brian galli says:

    All 4 collaborating to create one.
    Very cool. Rock on!!

  21. Dorothy Wilson says:

    Excellent film

  22. Valerie Jones says:

    Well done! An excellent film.

  23. Valerie Jones says:

    Well done! An excellent documentary.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Great film

  25. Anonymous says:

    Very interesting

  26. Anonymous says:

    Interesting context musically

  27. Deejay Hill says:

    Lovely reflective and entertaining film

  28. D Longfils says:

    Good to see

  29. Paul Yarbrough says:


  30. ah says:

    shows the passion and thought behind making music. thanks to all involved.

  31. J. Dennis Bonney says:

    First rate account of an outstanding ensemble.

  32. Helen says:

    Touching and informative documentary

  33. Geoff Jones says:

    A real treat to watch!

  34. Geoff Jones says:

    Really good!

  35. Sara Katz says:

    So good to get a glimpse of the inner workings of one of the very finest string quartets of our time. Thank you!

  36. Sarah Hersh says:

    Congrats on the documentary of 4 wonderful artists, teachers, scholars, and gentlemen—who have created such an exemplary 4tet!

  37. Elise Rattle says:


  38. Bill Foshee says:

    Beautiful ensemble, wonderful music through a unique travel perspective involving touring musicians. The verbal and musical interactions were treasures.

  39. Graham says:

    Great quartet.

  40. Anna Harriette Foshee says:

    Exquisite, as usual. Anyone who works as an ensemble player should listen to the lessons and the beauty of this performance.
    Actually, anyone who loves the art form will be enriched by hearing the Alexander Quartet play, teach and rehearse.

  41. Bonnie Hampton says:

    Bravo! First class Documentary on every level. It gives excellent insight into the workings and life of a String Quartet. But the most important element is the beauty and quality of the actual playing of the Alexander Quartet, which is the real thing and absolutely wonderful.

  42. Patrick Campbell says:

    The way music should be played. Wonderful!

  43. Barbara Scoble says:

    So amazing. The Alexander String Quartet is a treasure.

  44. Ray Tadio says:

    Throughly engaging…bravo!

  45. A.H. Foshee says:

    Exquisite, as usual

  46. A.H. Foshee says:


  47. VEWJ says:


  48. Susan says:

    An absolutely fabulous film! Many congrats.

  49. R Siani says:

    This documentary is a window into the soul of collaboration. As the daughter of a former chamber and orchestral musician, I saw first hand the level of commitment, dedication and compromise it takes to make music and cooperatively teach with a group of distinct personalities. It’s all here in this film and it’s all true. Our world would be a much better place if our politicians worked together like this.

  50. Shirley Singer says:

    Four superb musicians making a perfect connection with each other.
    The Alexander Quartet makes playing together seem so easy because they actually listen to each other.
    I especially liked the Brahms Intermezzo ending which they arranged for a string quartet.

  51. Dr Jon Nelson says:

    These gentlemen tell it exactly like it is in being in and playing in a quartet. They express themselves eloquently and play in exactly the same manner. They believe every word that they utter; and, the musical results reflect the same honesty. This film was a gift, a testament, and an accurate tale of four artists attempting the near impossible. Oh, how close they come! Mazel Tov!

  52. Anne Valdespino says:

    This film shows that these guys love each other as much as they love the music and that’s what it takes for four individual artists, each with their own strong opinions, to collaborate for more than a decade. Thanks Robert, for making a wonderful slice-of-life film and also to the Alexander Quartet for giving such complete access to the director. I also want to see the reality show of the quartet as a family with all the wives, kids and friends. That’d be a fun film, too!

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