The MARTINŮ STRINGS from Prague (Czech Republic) consists of twelve string players exemplifying the Czech historical string performance tradition. The ensemble has since its foundation, become known for its distinctive rhythmic vitality, pronounced melodic song like lyricism and musicality and expressive Slavonic sound. The musicians of the Martinů Strings comprise of some of the Czech Republic’s leading chamber musicians whose extensive performance experience has been gained over the years, through performing both as soloists, chamber musicians and also with the major leading Czech symphonic orchestras.

The Martinů Strings is led by the Czech-Swedish violinist and concert organiser Jaroslav Sonsky, who was performing as a soloist and chamber musician in 24 countries. As a violinist of the Norrköping Symphony Orchestra in Sweden under the orchestra’s principal conductors Franz Welser-Möst, Junichi Hirokami and Alan Buribayev, and who has arranged concerts throughout Europe for the Norrköping Symphony Orchestra, and also performed extensively in concerts with his Berlin based ensemble the Epos Trio Berlin, with the cellist and chairman of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Jan Diesselhorst. Before moving to Sweden he performned as a violinist in Czech Philharmonic Orchestra with its principal conductor Václav Neumann.

In 2013 the Martinů Strings Prague ensemble undertook a critically acclaimed tour of Sweden, in 2014 tour of Slovakia and Hungary performing a program of predominantly Czech music. The Martinů Strings Prague subsequently received an invitation to return to Slovakia in 2016. 2017 Martinů Strings Prague ensemble perform in Prague at the Bohuslav Martinů Festival dedicated to the Czech composer Bohuslav Martinů, whose name the ensemble has adopted and honors.  

The ensemble performed the most important concert in 2018 – year of centenary celebration of grounding Czech Republic. The concert by this occasion took place in UNO - Geneve (Switzerland), for 700 diplomats. 

Martinů Strings Prague ensemble performed also in Paris and Versailles (2019) at the occasion of the 20th aniversary Czech Republic in EU. Its future tour will be heading to England (2020).  


The ensemble is based in Prague’s Dominican monastery located in the centre of the city, where it performs its unique subscription concert programs in the monastery’s historic ornate Baroque Hall. The repertoire of the Martinů Strings Prague comprises of works of Czech and noted world composers, music from Baroque period up to the present,  including premiere performances of contemporary living composers, and works commissioned for the ensemble. 

1st violin:

Martin Tupý, Radka Preislerová, Dagmar Virtová, Jaroslav Šonský,         

2nd. violin: 

Tomáš Prosek, Petra Böhm, Tatiana Imenová                     


Martha Špelinová, Mikoláš Čech                   


Štěpánka Kutmanová, Simona Hečová                     


Jan Smažík    


In a recent critically acclaimed commemorative concert performance of the Martinů Strings at the Spanish Synagogue in Prague, the Czech press wrote:

'”Twelve string ensemble founded and directed by violinist Jaroslav Šonský, living in Sweden, among other things, winner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Gratias Agit for spreading the good name of the Czech Republic and its culture abroad, and whom we had the opportunity to meet a couple of times, even here as an outstanding soloist and chamber musician. In Prague Martinů Strings gathered in the same vein tune great players who can take full advantage of such an eminently chamber cast together and perhaps even breathe. The orchestra also plays in a standing position, which allows him responsive interplay and almost solo performances. Not only that, but also the intensity of the picture and dive into the interpreted work is reminiscent of the famous Warchal Slovak Chamber Orchestra. Uniform perfect phrasing and intonation together with passion for the game and create compact and yet intimate crystal clear sound characterized the dramaturgical challenging evening. Within this sounded Allegro from Quintet Schubert Death and the Maiden in Mahler's arrangement for string orchestra, Barber's Adagio for Strings and finally op.110 Shostakovich Chamber Symphony, dedicated to the victims of Second World War, a work of remarkable depth and scope, which did not remain Martinů Strings owe nothing, belonged to the contrary, the culmination of the evening, after which the band immediately started touring the Swedish Norrköping, Linköping and Stockholm”.

Jana Vašatová

Rozhlas č. 7/2013  Praha (Czech Republic)


Martinu Strings spelade skön musik vid lördagens konsert i Sankt Olai kyrka i Norrköping.

Mot de tunga orden ställdes musiken. Stråksymfonikerna Martinu Strings från Prag ledda av Norrköpingsviolinisten Jaroslav Sonsky gav en mycket uppskattad konsert. Schuberts stråkkvartett Döden och flickan av växlade mellan dansanta tongångar och mer dramatiska. Symfonikerna, knappt ett dussin stråkar, hade en osedvanligt mjuk ton konserten igenom. Pianosolisten Sylvaine Wiart medverkade i Debussys “Danses sacrée et profane” som hon inledde med brutna ackord, drömska och dröjande. Stråkarna mötte temat och snart blev det som en vågors lek vid stranden, skickligt spelat och samtidigt djupt berörande.Konserten avslutades med Sjostakovitj Kammarsymfoni opus 110 som kompositören tillägnade andra världskrigens offer. Detta sorgekväde gör omtag med hela och halva toner som klättrar uppför stegar men alltid vänder neråt. Genom signaler av flykt och fara hörs individuella röster som aldrig tystnar i ett verk som växer sig allt större.

Martinu Strings i S:t Olai

reportage on 28 januari 2013, Norrköping Sweden

Ann-Charlotte Sandelin