The Bergamot Quartet is a string quartet whose mission is bringing to life the works of living composers. We collaborate frequently with other musicians and perform regularly. Highlights include a performance of George Crumb’s Black Angels at the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage, Anthony Cheung’s Real Book of Fake Tunes with flutist Claire Chase, and a masterclass with the Kronos Quartet. We were fellows at the Banff Evolution of the String Quartet program in the summers of 2018 and 2019 as well as participants in the Quatuor Diotima Academy in France.
2020 is seeing us in residency at Towson University, University of Baltimore, University of Maryland Baltimore County, and University of Texas El Paso, as well as many regional appearances. We received support from New Music USA for the commission of my piece In the Brink for string quartet and drum kit, featured throughout this season in our programs. We have been accepted as the inaugural Graduate String Quartet in Residence at Mannes School of Music in New York City, studying with the JACK Quartet.
Ledah Finck, Sarah Thomas, Irene Han, Amy Tan
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TRIADS: Arrangements in Site and Sound
TRIADS: Arrangements in Site & Sound explores the relationships between performances of classical music, physical sites, and the communities surrounding them. This performance series, film, and art installation premieres a newly commissioned work by composer Ledah Finck. Inspired by the embedded histories and acoustic languages of three separate locations—Clifton Mansion, B. Willow, and NomuNomu—different elements of Finck’s composition will be performed at each of these sites over the course of three nights. The project will culminate in a film installation, by Rachel Schmidt, at In/29 (In Progress) that assembles these fragments and presents the piece in its entirety.
Performed and presented in collaboration with Bergamot Quartet, Pants Trio, and Mind on Fire, this project uses classical music as a case study to question how the built environment implicates bodies and reinforces traditional hierarchies. Ultimately, TRIADS: Arrangements in Site & Sound subverts traditional methods of performance and consumption by breaking down the whole, scattering its components across space and time, and then reconstructing it through site-specific sound recordings and visual explorations.
"...there are solo tracks as well as passages by pared-down versions of the group. Luminous crescendos that exude a natural radiance. Poetic reveries that thrill with their commitment to pith. Frenzied drama that manages to exude grace. Simple taps and gurgles that conjure the natural world. 'String Solo No. 2' actually works as a percussion piece, with Tal Yahalom tapping a parade of feels from his guitar. One section of 'Contraband Peanut Butter' finds Ledah Finck’s violin drone stabilizing a swirl of hubbub just aching to boil over. Dunston has a way with suspense, and his design game is strong. At some points, it’s as if Air were interpreting Anthony Davis’ I’ve Known Rivers or Leroy Jenkins’ Legend of Ai Glatson. Or both at once."
-Jim Macnie, Jazztimes
THE WITCHES are Ledah Finck on violin/viola and vocals and Louna Dekker-Vargas on flutes and vocals. We are an experimental duo that transcends the limitations of two treble instruments through a blend of free improvisation, arrangements of everything from Telemann to Stockhausen to Paul Motian, and works we commission from living composers. Our performances might be unified by a theme, such as our 2019 "Visions of Pythia" which explored the mystic othering of women throughout the ages through the eyes of an ancient Greek oracle, or our 2016 set of commissions called Behind the Curtain, celebrating womens' roles as patrons of the arts. Or they might be an improvised dialogue with and reactions to a sonic or physical environment. Our SoundCloud page contains a wide index of improvised music. We are currently accepting proposals from visual artists who might be interested in collaborating on a multimedia video or installation involving these recordings.
earspace is a contemporary performance ensemble dedicated to creating invigorating multi-sensory performances of music worth believing in. We seek to expose the inherent potentials within every moment and space, cultivating visceral reactions unique to every manifestation. Through our projects, we explore the extremities of contemporary performance and work to bring audiences closer to the music they experience. earspace has performed across the Triangle at CAM Raleigh and Carolina Performing Arts, and less typical venues like the Google Fiber Space, as well as other venues across North Carolina.
earspace's core members are Vincent Povaszay, conductor and codirector; Richard Drehoff, piano, tech, and codirector; Philip Snyder, flutes; Andy Hudson, clarinets; Ledah Finck, violin; Lena Vidulich, viola; Erin Snedecor, cello; Daniel Brottman, piano and horn; Victoria Nelson, percussion.