eighth blackbird

Miller Theatre at Columbia University, 2960 Broadway at 116th Street, NYC

Saturday, October 15 at 7:30pm

$25 ($20 with SONiCPass)

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eighth blackbird 2011
Thomas Albert, Thirteen Ways - 11. Driving, Relentless


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Tim Munro, flutes
Michael J. Maccaferri, clarinets
Yvonne Lam, violin & viola
Nicholas Photinos, cello
Matthew Duvall, percussion
Lisa Kaplan, piano

Hailed as “friendly, unpretentious, idealistic, and highly skilled” by the New Yorker, eighth blackbird is widely lauded for its unusual performing style – often playing from memory with theatrical flair – and for its efforts to make new music accessible to wider audiences. Since its founding in 1996, the sextet has actively commissioned and recorded new works.The group’s CD strange imaginary animals won two Grammy Awards in 2008, including one for Best Chamber Music Performance.

Now celebrating its 15th season, eighth blackbird showcases music by the two most recent Pulitzer Prize-winning composers in its 2010-11 recording and performing repertoire, featuring new and recent works (written expressly for the ensemble) by both Jennifer Higdon and Steve Reich. Headlining the group’s season is its new politically-driven two-part program "PowerFUL/less", tackling Stravinsky's provocative statement questioning the value, meaning and power of art. The ensemble will curate and perform in Park Avenue Armory’s new “Tune-In” contemporary music festival in New York City. Other highlights include a return to Zankel Hall; performances at Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Art; a tour of Higdon’s new concerto On a Wire with several high-profile orchestras; Reich festivals on both sides of the; a return to the Library of Congress; and a new CD featuring Reich’s prize-winning Double Sextet on Nonesuch, which was released in September 2010.

Last season eighth blackbird made its debut at the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, playing the world premiere of Mark-Anthony Turnage’s Grazioso!, and presented a new version of Schoenberg's Pierrot lunaire. The ensemble premiered Slide, a new music-theater piece by Rinde Eckert and Steven Mackey, at the Ojai Music Festival (where eighth blackbird acted as Music Director for the 2009 season), and it held a week-long residency at the Curtis Institute of Music. Highlights of past seasons have included performances in South Korea, Mexico, the UK, the Netherlands, and at nearly every major chamber music venue in North America..The sextet has been profiled in the New York Times and featured on CBS News Sunday Morning and Bloomberg TV’s Muse. eighth blackbird has recorded for the Cedille, Nonesuch and Naxos labels, and is represented by David Lieberman Artists' Representatives.