FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Sarah Snyder
Sextet Engages School of Music Students in Innovative Residency and Performance Experience
February 18, 2013 – College Park, MD –The Chicago-based sextet eighth blackbird combines the finesse of a string quartet, the energy of a rock band and the audacity of a storefront theater company. The two-time Grammy-winning musicians, who entertain and provoke audiences across the country and around the world will perform Shifted During Flight, an all-out jam session that includes an instrumental suite from the 2012 Grammy-winning recording of Steve Mackey's "Lonely Motel.”
While at the Clarice Smith Center, the group will hold a one-time residency with students from the University of Maryland School of Music (SOM), culminating in a joint performance of Steve Reich’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Double Sextet, in which the students form a second sextet on-stage with eighth blackbird.
About eighth blackbird
The contemporary music sextet derives its name from the eighth stanza of Wallace Stevens' poem Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird, and deliberately spells it in lower case. Since its founding in 1996, it has been active in commissioning new works from composers such as Steve Reich, George Perle, Joseph Schwantner and Paul Moravec.
The members of eighth blackbird hold degrees in music performance from Oberlin Conservatory, the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, the Juilliard School, Northwestern University, and the Curtis Institute of Music. Current players in the group include Yvonne Lam, violin/viola; Nicholas Photinos, cello; Tim Munro, flutes; Michael Maccaferri, clarinets; Lisa Kaplan, piano; and Matthew Duvall, percussion.
The group is currently engaged in a three-year, Mellon Foundation-funded term as Ensemble in Residence at Philadelphia's Curtis Institute of Music.
About UMD School of Music - the eighth blackbird Residency
eighth blackbird believes students must be genuinely engaged in order to grow musically, and that one-way lecturing isn’t sufficient to achieve that. They are passionate about raising the bar of chamber music performance across the United States and will bring their theatrical flair to SOM students in a unique program that includes movement coaching for chamber ensembles, performance aesthetics and the opportunity for students to perform on-stage alongside the ensemble.
This tour of eighth blackbird is made possible by a grant from Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation with support from the National Endowment for the Arts. WAMU 88.5 is the official media sponsor of this performance. Produced by special arrangement with Samuel French, Inc. New York City. The Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center is supported by a grant from the Maryland State Arts Council, an agency dedicated to cultivating a vibrant cultural community where the arts thrive. An agency of the Department of Business & Economic Development, the MSAC provides financial support and technical assistance to nonprofit organizations, units of government, colleges and universities for arts activities. Funding for the Maryland State Arts Council is also provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency. Learn more about the Clarice Smith Center's donor support.