In honor of the 250th anniversary of the birth of Ludwig van Beethoven (baptized December 17, 1770; actual birth date unknown), Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival is pleased to announce that the complete Beethoven String Quartet Cycle, performed by the Miró Quartet, will return in June of 2020. The Cycle will consist of six concerts, June 17th, 18th, 21st, 22nd, 24th, and 25th, all performed at Orcas Center in Eastsound, Washington. Ticketing information and other details to follow, but for now – save the dates!
Aloysia Friedmann, Artistic Director
Jon Kimura Parker, Artistic Advisor
Artistic Director Aloysia Friedmann presented a brilliant assemblage of internationally renowned performers in the ten concerts of Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival’s 22nd season. The festival began August 2nd and 3rd with the stunning mezzo-soprano and Metropolitan Opera star Susan Graham, accompanied by the inimitable pianist Jon Kimura Parker. The final concerts on August 16th and 17th featured the world premiere of a new string quartet by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Kevin Puts, performed by the Miró Quartet. This year’s Festival also featured returning violinist Chee-Yun, playing the dazzling Chausson Concerto, and LA Philharmonic concertmaster and principal violinist Martin Chalifour, performing a Piazzolla tango and several Eastern European folk songs with the sensational Slovenian guitarist Mak Grgic.
The Festival welcomed several other performers from near and far to the Festival: violinists Robyn Bollinger, Lilit Gampel, and Charlotte Marckx, cellists Olivia Marckx and Julian Schwarz, Red Cedar Chamber Music performers Jan Boland, flute, Carey Bostian, cello, and John Dowdall, guitar with silent-film curator Michael Zahs, a surprise performance by pianist Yurie Farnsworth, and even a magician, Matthew Laslo.
A fresh development this year was a pair of engaging daytime talks with former Seattle Symphony director Gerard Schwarz and well-known Canadian radio personality Eric Friesen.
Here’s what we and our audiences enjoyed during the 2019 Festival, which took place Friday, August 2, through Saturday, August 17:
New this year: Free Pre-Concert Talks one hour before all evening concerts!
An Evening with Susan Graham
Fri. Aug. 2, 7:30pm / Sat. Aug. 3, 5:30pm Pre-Concert Talks with Gerard Schwarz
Roman Carnival Overture for piano four-hands
Artem Kuznetsov, Yurie Farnsworth (who replaced Jon Kimura Parker, her graduate piano studies instructor, on this piece)
Les Nuits d’été (Summer Nights)
Susan Graham, Jon Kimura Parker
Lilit Gampel, Charlotte Marckx, Aloysia Friedmann, Julian Schwarz, Artem Kuznetsov
Piano Quartet in A minor
Lilit Gampel, Aloysia Friedmann, Olivia Marckx, Artem Kuznetsov
Susan Graham, Jon Kimura Parker
Tue. Aug. 6, 7:30pm / Wed. Aug. 7, 5:30pm Pre-Concert Talks with Lisa Bergman
Burlesque in G Major for three violins
Lilit Gampel, Chee-Yun, Charlotte Marckx
Ludwig van Beethoven
String Trio in G Major, Op. 9, No. 1
Lilit Gampel, Aloysia Friedmann, Olivia Marckx
Duo for violin and cello
Lilit Gampel, Julian Schwarz
Danse macabre for solo piano (arr. Liszt/Horowitz)
Piano Quintet in E-flat Major, Op. 44
Chee-Yun, Charlotte Marckx, Aloysia Friedmann, Julian Schwarz, Artem Kuznetsov
Orcas~trations: Music, Magic, and Movies
Fri. Aug. 9, 7:30pm / Sat. Aug. 10, 5:30pm Pre-Concert Talks with Michael Zahs
Histoire Du Tango (History of the Tango) for violin and guitar
Martin Chalifour, Mak Grgic
Special performance to live music by Magician Matthew Laslo
Robyn Bollinger, Martin Chalifour, Chee-Yun, Aloysia Friedmann, Mak Grgic, Julian Schwarz, Jon Kimura Parker
Early Films from the Brinton Silent Film Collection – Original Scores and Music Performed Live by Red Cedar Chamber Music – In collaboration with the Orcas Island Film Festival
Jan Boland, flute
Carey Bostian, cello
John Dowdall, guitar
Michael Zahs, speaker
Piano Quintet in A Major, Op. 81
Robyn Bollinger, Chee-Yun, Aloysia Friedmann, Julian Schwarz, Jon Kimura Parker
Dedication for Martin Friedmann
Tue. Aug. 13, 7:30pm / Wed. Aug. 14, 5:30pm Pre-Concert Talks with Eric Friesen
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Quartet in B-flat Major, KV 458 The Hunt
Arcana for solo cello and string quintet (2008)
Julian Schwarz, Daniel Ching, William Fedkenheuer, John Largess, Aloysia Friedmann, Joshua Gindele
Andante con moto from Death and the Maiden
Scherzo No. 2 in C Minor, Op. 14, for solo piano
Jon Kimura Parker
Piano Quintet in F Minor, Op. 34
Miró Quartet, Jon Kimura Parker
World Premiere Finale
Fri. Aug. 16, 7:30pm / Sat. Aug. 17, 5:30pm Pre-Concert Talks with Eric Friesen
Romanian Folk Dances for violin and guitar (arr. Grgic)
Martin Chalifour, Mak Grgic
Three Macedonian Pieces for solo guitar
Csárdás for violin and guitar (arr. Grgic)
Martin Chalifour, Mak Grgic
Selected works for guitar and violin
Martin Chalifour, Mak Grgic
Home for string quartet (World Premiere 2019)
Composed for the Miró Quartet
Lead Commissioner: Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival
Air for violin and piano (2000)
Chee-Yun, Jon Kimura Parker
Concerto in D Major for violin, piano, and string quartet
Chee-Yun, Jon Kimura Parker, Martin Chalifour, Robyn Bollinger, Aloysia Friedmann, Julian Schwarz
Chamber Music on Lopez Island:World Premiere Finale
Thurs. August 15, 5:30pm / 4:30 Pre-Concert Talk with Eric Friesen and Kevin Puts
Lopez Center for Community and the Arts | 204 Village Rd | Lopez Island WA 98261 | 360-468-2203
Concert Repertoire and artists are the Same as Aug. 16 & 17 above
Mon. Aug. 5, 1:00pm Behind the Baton with Gerard Schwarz
Wed. Aug. 14, 10:00am Meet the Composer with Eric Friesen
Interviewing composer Kevin Puts with the Miró Quartet
Free Festival Events
Wed. Aug. 7, 1:00pm Children’s Concert
Fri. Aug. 16, 1:00pm Open Rehearsal for Seniors
Hamlet Concerts for Orcas Island Residents (at various island community centers)
Aloysia Friedmann, Artistic Director, violin, viola
Jon Kimura Parker, Artistic Advisor, piano
Robyn Bollinger, violin
Martin Chalifour, violin
Eric Friesen, broadcaster/writer/speaker
Lilit Gampel, violin
Susan Graham, mezzo-soprano
Mak Grgic, guitar
Artem Kuznetsov, piano
Matthew Laslo, magician
Daniel Ching, violin
John Largess, viola
Joshua Gindele, cello
William Fedkenheuer, violin
Kevin Puts, composer-in-residence
Red Cedar Chamber Music
Jan Boland, flute
Carey Bostian, cello
John Dowdall, guitar
Gerard Schwarz, conductor/composer speaker
Julian Schwarz, cello
Michael Zahs, historian/speaker
Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival is thrilled to bring Time for Three back to Orcas Island. After their knockout performances at the 2016 Festival, the trio is ready to dazzle once again with their infectious trailblazing, genre-bending music! Time for Three will be on Orcas Island April 16th and 17th to be OICMF Musicians-in-Residence, performing, teaching, and entertaining at school assemblies, a workshop for musicians of all genres, and an evening concert at Orcas Center.
At 7:30pm on Wednesday, April 17th, Time for Three plays a concert for the Orcas community at Orcas Center. High-energy performances by the trio, double bassist Ranaan Meyer and violinists Nick Kendall and Charles Yang, include arrangements of traditional and contemporary repertoire from Bach and Mozart to the Beatles and Katy Perry, as well as performances of world premieres by Pulitzer Prize-winning composers and the trio’s own originals. The trio won a well-deserved Emmy Award for their album Time for Three Live! with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra. With their classical training and enthusiastic appreciation of popular music, Time for Three appeals to an unusually broad audience. In 2016, Time for Three played a few “teaser” concerts around Orcas before their Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival performances and drew an enthusiastic and varied audience, from staunch classical music lovers to classic rock fans to two sell-out concerts. Don’t miss this opportunity to see this trio of exuberant world-class musicians on Orcas Island! Tickets are $25 for adults and $10 for students 18 and under.
Time for Three grew from Nick and Ranaan’s downtime at the Curtis Institute of Music when they and violinist Zachary DePue (who left the band in 2015 and was eventually replaced by Juilliard graduate Charles Yang) started jamming together. The trio draws much of its energy from the members’ unique musical backgrounds, from positions in major orchestras and jazz bands to collaborating with nonprofit groups to bring the joy of music to disadvantaged areas.
Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival thanks sponsors Barbara Bedell, Carl de Boor, Janet Ketcham, and Mimi and Slim Sommerville for generously underwriting this Musicians-in-Residence experience.
Time for Three Members
Double bassist Ranaan Meyer has performed with major orchestras and jazz stars, including Branford Marsalis and Jane Monheit. He publishes The Next Level Bassist, a free online journal dedicated to bass education. Ranaan has received a multi-year Community Partner grant from the American Composers Forum to compose 10 pieces for student musicians in disadvantaged areas.
Nick Kendall first picked up the violin at age three and trained in the Suzuki Method, which his grandfather, John Kendall, brought to America in the 1960s. Irreverent, funny, and relentless, he has become a force for bringing people together through music, on stage and off. Several years ago, Nick gathered his friends to form a band whose direction comes from the power of the collective, now the critically acclaimed East Coast Chamber Orchestra.
American genre-crossing violin virtuoso Charles Yang has been awarded the 2018 Leonard Bernstein Award. The Boston Globe describes him as one who “plays classical violin with the charisma of a rock star.” Not just confined to classical violin, Juilliard graduate Charles Yang’s improvisational abilities as a violinist, electric violinist, and vocalist have led him to featured performances with a variety of artists and festivals.
Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival has hosted many Musicians-in-Residence over the last several years, but the power couple behind the festival hasn’t had time in their busy schedules for an Orcas Island residency until now!
Artistic Director Aloysia Friedmann and Artistic Advisor Jon Kimura (Jackie) Parker founded Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival in 1998 with one long weekend of concerts. Since then, the annual August festival has grown to over two weeks of evening concerts with lavish receptions, a children’s concert, lectures, and a variety of free concerts. Aloysia and Jackie look forward to an action-packed residency full of music education and community concerts beginning on Monday, January 28th. They will work with student musicians in the public schools, perform a recital for the community, give free masterclasses and ensemble coaching sessions, and spend a musical day on Shaw Island.
Both Aloysia and Jackie are Pacific Northwest natives. Aloysia Friedmann was raised in Seattle by parents Martin Friedmann and Laila Storch, both esteemed musicians. Her violin and viola studies at The Juilliard School led her to a varied musical career of performances with the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, Astor Piazzolla, Jessye Norman, Frederica von Stade, André Previn, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Elton John, Metallica, and on Broadway, onstage with Dustin Hoffman. She frequently performs solo engagements with orchestras and performs in festivals worldwide, is a board member of Chamber Music America, and was named one of 2018’s Top 30 Professionals by Musical America, a list of top innovators, independent thinkers, and entrepreneurs in the music industry.
Jon Kimura Parker grew up in Vancouver, B.C. He is an Officer of The Order of Canada and holds Honorary Doctorates from the University of British Columbia and the Toronto Conservatory of Music. Jackie’s concerto performances are in high demand with major orchestras around the globe. In addition, he tours with the Montrose Trio and is a founding member of the crossover group Off The Score with legendary Police drummer Stewart Copeland. He is Professor of Piano at The Shepherd School of Music at Rice University and is the Artistic Director of the Honens International Piano Competition.
The January 28th masterclasses are open to violinists, violists, and pianists, and observers are welcome. The masterclasses are free of charge and run from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. There is limited space at this event, so Pre-Registration is required for Participants and Observers. Please contact the OICMF office at email@example.com or (360) 376-6636 to register.
On Tuesday, January 29th, local instrumental ensembles are invited to free private coaching sessions with Aloysia and Jackie. The sessions run from 2:30 – 4:30 p.m. and are available to ensembles of all instrument combinations. Pre-Registration is required by January 21st. Contact the OICMF office at firstname.lastname@example.org or (360) 376-6636 to register.
At 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, January 29th, the lofty acoustics and gothic architecture of the Orcas Christian School chapel set the stage for a Community Recital. Aloysia and Jackie play the exquisite Brahms Sonata Number 3 in D minor for violin and piano and Jackie plays two of Chopin’s intricate and moving Ballades for piano and the Piano Sonata in A Major by Mozart. The recital also features a few shorter pieces, including at least one sultry tango. Tickets for the recital are by donation and are available at Darvill’s Bookstore. Suggested donation is $20. Seating is limited in the chapel and tickets will go quickly!
Aloysia and Jackie will board the inter-island ferry to Shaw Island on Wednesday, January 30th, to work with the students of Shaw School, and the whole Shaw community is invited to a concert at the Shaw Community Building that evening.
Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival is thrilled to be able to bring performers of this caliber to work with local musicians of all ages and perform for Orcas Island and surrounding communities. OICMF thanks the Funhouse, Orcas Christian School, and Shaw Islanders Inc. for hosting these events and Darvill’s Bookstore for ticket management. The events on Orcas Island are sponsored by John and Birthe Gorton and Catherine and Stephen Henderson and Shaw Island events are sponsored by Carolyn Haugen, Shaw School Foundation, and Shaw Islanders Inc. Special thanks go to these generous underwriters and all of the kind island donors who make it all possible.
The 2019 Festival dates have been set—mark your calendars for the Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival August 2 through 17. Artistic Director Aloysia Friedmann plans to present internationally renowned mezzo-soprano and Metropolitan Opera star Susan Graham in recital with Artistic Advisor Jon Kimura Parker, the Miró Quartet will give a world premiere of a new string quartet by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Kevin Puts on both Orcas Island and Lopez Island, and violinist Chee-Yun returns to perform the dazzling Chausson Concerto.
The 2018 Festival season is now behind us. As the weather cools, we look back at our 21st season with fond memories. Artists came from all across the United States, Canada, and as far away as Denmark and Portugal to perform in the Festival. Several of this year’s musicians have played at the Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival many times before. They were joined in creating musical memories on the Festival stage and beyond by quite a few new performers; all were happy to be greeted by welcoming home hosts and sponsors.
Artistic Director Aloysia Friedmann has once again proven herself to be extraordinarily gifted at programming each Festival concert as both a stand-alone event and a cohesive component of the five-program, ten-concert Festival. The first concert opened with what is considered the greatest work written for piano four hands, Schubert’s Fantasie in F minor, performed with gusto by the inimitable Jon Kimura Parker and Scott Cuellar. The energy and enthusiasm didn’t let up until after the last sublime notes of the Dvorák Piano Quartet on August 18th. There were many highlights this year; audience members all have their particular favorites, but most would agree that the Brandenburg Concertos were truly over the top in their contagious exuberance. Harpsichordist Jeffrey Kahane led the ensemble in all six concertos, each with a different mix of brilliant soloists, and his harpsichord cadenza in Concerto #5 was electrifying. Frederica von Stade’s beautiful mezzo-soprano voice graced the stage during the Channel Crossing concerts in a lovely, heartfelt performance with pianist Laurana Mitchelmore in memory of Laurana’s husband and Festival friend Charles Mitchelmore. The Windy Day in Paris concerts included an impromptu collaboration between Jon Kimura Parker and American Idol past contender Sanjaya Malakar, who Miró Quartet violinist (and avid Idol fan) Daniel Ching had recognized creating craft cocktails at The Barnacle in Eastsound!
The main events of the Festival were the evening concerts, but many activities kept musicians and audiences busy during the daytime as well. The church next door was filled to capacity for a lively Concerto Chat™, an informative talk given by Jon Kimura Parker at the piano, all about performing solos with orchestras. Our five Know the Score lecturers enlightened listeners over morning coffee and treats and then returned in the evening to entertain audiences with lively Pre-Concert Talks. Who knew pianist and classical radio host Lisa Bergman was such a ham? Young people of all ages met Peter, the Wolf, Grandma, and the rest of Prokofiev’s menagerie in WindSync’s lively Children’s Concert, an imaginative version of Peter and the Wolf. WindSync also performed short and lively Hamlet Concerts for residents of Olga, West Sound, and Deer Harbor. Orcas and Lopez senior citizens were gathered for lunch at the Orcas Senior Center before the Open Rehearsal for Seniors when the power went out! So, instead of the seniors caravanning over to the very dark Orcas Center, the musicians brought the rehearsal to the Senior Center. And OICMF took the show “on the road” (actually, on the boat!) to Lopez Island for a Know the Score lecture and the seventh annual OICMF concert for Lopez residents.
Our heartfelt thanks go out to all of the remarkable musicians, volunteers too numerous to list, and to you, our fabulous donors and supporters, for making this season’s Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival such an exciting, invigorating, and rewarding experience.
Know the Score Lectures
Comprehensive in scope, the Know the Score lectures during the Summer Festival are given by highly-regarded lecturers from the Northwest and Festival artists, all representing unique aspects of the classical music world. These lectures are rich in detail, reflecting the social and historical context of the composers and the repertoire of the concerts. The lectures take place at St. Francis Catholic Church, next door to Orcas Center, and each lecture is augmented by a visit to a concert rehearsal. One Know the Score lecture also takes place on Lopez Island each Festival season, at the historic Port Stanley Schoolhouse, on the morning of the Chamber Music on Lopez Concert. Purchase Orcas lecture tickets through the Box Office at Orcas Center, and at various Lopez outlets for the Lopez lecture. A limited number of seats may be sold at the door, depending on available space.
Our 2018 Know the Score Lecturers:
Know the Score: Music Among Friends
Orcas Island – Friday, August 3, 9:00am – 12:30pm
Lopez Island – Sunday, August 5, 1:00pm – 3:30pm
Jonathan Pasternack conducts orchestras, opera and ballet in the United States and Europe, with such ensembles as the London Symphony Orchestra, Residentie Orkest of The Hague, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, and the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center, among others. Currently Music Director and Conductor of the Port Angeles Symphony Orchestra, Mr. Pasternack has held appointments with the Oregon Symphony, Bellevue Opera, Icicle Creek Music Center, Ithaca College, Pacific Lutheran University, and the University of Washington School of Music. Born and raised in New York City, Jonathan Pasternack studied violin, cello, trombone, piano, and percussion. He won a trombone scholarship to the Manhattan School of Music at the age of sixteen and later transferred to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to pursue studies in astronomy, philosophy, and political science. Mr. Pasternack made his conducting debut when he was eighteen, while a student at MIT, where he founded and led the MIT Chamber Orchestra for three seasons.
Know the Score: Channel Crossing
Tuesday, August 7, 9:00am – 12:30pm
Violist John Largess began his studies in Boston at age 12 in the public schools, studying with Michael Zaretsky of the Boston Symphony, and later as a student of Michael Tree at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. In 1995, he graduated from Yale University to join the Colorado String Quartet as interim violist, with whom he toured the United States and Canada, teaching and concertizing. The following year, he was appointed principal violist of the Charleston Symphony Orchestra in South Carolina, a position he held until joining the Miró Quartet in 1997. Also an active speaker and writer about all things chamber?musical, in 2004 Mr. Largess was invited to give a week?long audience lecture series as a part of the Eighth International String Quartet Competition at the Banff Centre for the Arts in Alberta, Canada. He repeated this series in 2007 and again in 2010.With his training in Greek and Latin Literature and his Bachelor’s degree in Archeology from Yale University, as well as studies at the Hebrew University in Israel, Mr. Largess has participated in excavations in Greece, Israel, and Jordan. John Largess serves as Senior Lecturer and Coordinator of String Chamber Music at the University of Texas at Austin Butler School of Music.
Know the Score: The Brandenburg Concertos
Friday, August 10, 9:00am – 12:30pm
A native of Seattle, Roger Sherman is the Associate Organist Emeritus of St. Mark’s Cathedral and Artistic Director Emeritus of the Orcas Choral Society. For the past 25 years, he has produced and hosted The Organ Loft, a popular weekly radio program about choral and organ music on Classical KING FM. Mr. Sherman is president of the Grammy Award winning Gothic Catalog, which publishes recordings on the Loft, Gothic, Clarion, and ReZound labels. Mr. Sherman holds degrees in music history, computer science, and organ performance from Oberlin College. He has performed as harpsichord soloist with the Milwaukee Chamber Orchestra, the Milwaukee Strings, and the Milwaukee Symphony, and has played organ recitals in such diverse places as Stanford University, Venice, Italy, and Walla Walla, Washington. Mr. Sherman has also had a significant career in technology. He was the first full-time Director of Testing for Microsoft and was on the team that produced the first versions of Microsoft Publisher, Microsoft Money, and Microsoft Works for Windows. He was the Director of Testing when Windows 95 and Office 95 were released and created Microsoft’s first Games products. Roger Sherman is now a full-time resident of Orcas Island.
Know the Score: A Windy Day in Paris
Tuesday, August 14, 9:00am – 12:30pm
Lisa is Founder and Artistic Director of the Mostly Nordic Chamber Music Series and Executive Director of NOISE (Northwest Opera in Schools, Etcetera). She is a national Gracie Award-winning radio announcer on Classic KING-FM, appearing daily, streaming worldwide on the internet. Bergman served for seven years as the Executive Director and is the Classical Music Program Advisor of the Icicle Creek Center for the Arts in Leavenworth. Lisa is also a concert pianist specializing in the fields of collaborative piano and chamber music, and is a graduate of the Juilliard School, the State University of New York at Stony Brook and the University of Washington. She served as an Artist in Residence and member of the University of Washington Music Faculty (1989-1999), teaching in the fields of accompanying and opera coaching. As a recording artist her discography includes six chamber music CDs and one solo CD. She made her Carnegie Recital Hall debut in 1983. The Washington State Music Teachers Association cited her for “extraordinary service, outstanding musicianship, dedication and leadership which have significantly contributed to the development and growth of music education in the State of Washington.”
Know the Score: Dvorák Finale!
Friday, August 17, 9:00am – 12:30pm
Violinist Svend Rønning is Chair of the String Division at Pacific Lutheran University where he is Professor of Music. He is one of the most active performers in the Puget Sound, serving as Concertmaster of the Tacoma Symphony Orchestra as well as performing frequent soloist, recitalist, chamber musician and recording artist. He is also Artistic Director of the Second City Chamber Series, Tacoma’s award winning producer of chamber music concerts and chamber music educational programs. Svend has appeared in venues around the world, including the Aspen, Eastern, Harkness, Jerusalem, Methow, Pacific, Rhode Island, Spoleto and Wintergreen Music Festivals, and has served as Concertmaster of various orchestras including the Charlottesville Symphony, the San Jose Symphony, the Spoleto U.S.A. Chamber Orchestra, and the Tacoma Opera Orchestra.
What’s the difference between a concerto and a sonata? How about a Philharmonic, a Symphony, and an Orchestra? Do you know when it’s okay to clap between movements, or what a movement is in the first place? Next month, we’ll have top-notch answers to those questions—and any others you come up with!
Our own personal OICMF professors, Artistic Director Aloysia Friedmann and Artistic Advisor Jon Kimura Parker (Jackie), will be beamed in direct from Professor Parker’s studio at Rice University for OICMF’s Music 101. The two sessions, on Thursday, May 3 and Thursday, May 10, from 7-9pm, will be hosted by our dear friends at Funhouse.
To register for the event, submit questions, or learn more, give us a call at (360) 376-6636 or drop us a line at email@example.com.
Thanks to a grant from the Gould Family Foundation, these world-class sessions are free!
Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival is excited to bring the fun and energetic brass quartet The Westerlies to the San Juan Islands in late April to spread the joy of brass music through performances and educational workshops on Orcas, Lopez, and Shaw islands. Formed in 2011, the self-described “accidental brass quartet” takes its name from the prevailing winds that travel from west to east. Childhood friends from Seattle now based in New York, trumpet players Riley Mulherkar and Zubin Hensler and trombonists Andy Clausen and Willem de Koch are “skilled interpreters who are also adept improvisers” (NPR’s Fresh Air). The Westerlies explore jazz, roots, and chamber music influences to create music for audiences of all musical tastes.
The Westerlies are frequently invited to engage in educational and community outreach. They have presented masterclasses at music institutions such as The Juilliard School and Manhattan School of Music, and Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival is pleased that students of all ages in the San Juan Islands will have the opportunity to play and learn with these dynamic and talented musicians. The week-long residency is based on “A Common Language: Development of the American Song,” a lecture/demonstration developed by The Westerlies.
The quartet begins their action-packed OICMF residency on Monday, April 23rd, in an early morning session with Orcas High School students. The Westerlies continue their day with an afternoon masterclass for Orcas Island brass players and in the evening The Westerlies work and play with Orcas Island Community Band.
On Tuesday, April 24th, The Westerlies board a morning ferry bound for Lopez Island, where they will share their energetic music with the students of Lopez schools at an afternoon assembly. Lopez Islanders are invited that evening to Lopez Center for a free Community Concert at 6:30pm.
The Westerlies are back on Orcas Wednesday morning, and might just be seen strolling the streets of Eastsound with their instruments before they play for an Orcas Christian School assembly in the afternoon.
Thursday, April 26th, will find The Westerlies back in the Orcas School Band Room to continue working with high school and middle school band students before performing at Orcas Center for the Orcas Island Elementary students in the afternoon.
Mark your calendars for 7:00pm on Thursday, April 26th, and come to the Orcas Island Grange for a Community Concert with The Westerlies! Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students 18 and younger, and are available at Darvill’s Bookstore.
The Westerlies complete their musical tour of the San Juan Islands on Friday, April 27th, with a stop on Shaw Island to work with students at the Shaw School in the afternoon, and at 6:00 the Shaw Island community is invited to hear The Westerlies at a Community Concert at the Shaw Community Center. Admission to the Shaw concert is by donation.
This week-long series of Musicians-in-Residence events is supported in part by a grant from the Washington State Arts Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts and generous underwriting from Mimi and Slim Sommerville, Carolyn Haugen, The Shaw School Foundation, the Driftwood Fund, and kind patrons like you.