Concordia Chamber Players SummerFest 2022

Concordia SummerFest, A Magical Night with Sam Reider and the Human Hands

Sam Reider & The Human Hands were a hit at our first ever Concordia SummerFest on Friday, June 10, 2022. Sam was joined by Eddie Barbash on saxophone and Roy Williams on guitar. We were entertained with their unique style of modern folk music which got a few toes tapping, heads were bopping, and smiles all around.  Graced with perfect early summer weather, we were greeted with refreshing wine and beer along with nibbles. This was followed by a lively performance by Sam Reider & The Human Hands and, finally, a fabulous dinner feast. As always, the tranquil setting of Cradle Valley Farm made the night indeed magical. https://concordiaplayers.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/06/SummerFest-2022-IMG_6555.mov And for anyone who just couldn’t bear to leave quite yet and wanted the evening linger on just a little longer… there was this special night cap courtesy of Sam and Eddie! https://concordiaplayers.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/06/SummerFest-2022-IMG_8997.mov

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Andy akiho steel pan

Concordia presents Grammy award nominated “Seven Pillars”

from the Bucks County Herald Concordia Chamber Players closes out the season by presenting “Seven Pillars” by Andy Akiho, which has been nominated for two Grammy awards – Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance and Best Contemporary Classical Composition. The concert, performed by Brooklyn, N.Y.,-based Sandbox Percussion Ensemble, will take place at 3 p.m. Sunday, April 24, at The Solebury School Performing Arts Center, 6832 Phillips Mill Road, New Hope (Solebury Township). “Seven Pillars” is a “boldly genre-defying” audio and video collaboration for percussion quartet. The work consists of seven ensemble movements and one solo movement for each member of Sandbox. The evening-length work is the largest-scale chamber music work that Akiho has written and that Sandbox has commissioned. Akiho and Sandbox’s ongoing collaboration for “Seven Pillars” has continued on and off for eight years. It has been a labor of love between friends and toward the end of the project, Akiho and Sandbox expanded the collaborative circle. The form of “Seven Pillars” mirrors the ambitious nature of this multimedia work. The seven main movements function as a palindrome, with the music and their corresponding films highlighting the relationships between the various movements. Akiho composed “Pillar II” while staying at Cradle

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A concert for March: Concordia Players highlight women

Featured Article by Lori Goldstein from the Bucks County Herald The Concordia Chamber Players will be as excited as their loyal audience to return to Trinity Church in Solebury at 3 p.m. Sunday, March 6. The concert, conceived by cellist and Artistic Director Michelle Djokic, includes compositions by four female living composers. Long before the 2020 presidential elections, Djokic was assembling the program. “When Kamala Harris was nominated and then elected, I was so empowered. … I thought that this was the right time for this to happen … and when I saw International Women’s Day was on the calendar, it just worked beautifully. Somehow maybe it was meant to be this way.”International Women’s Day is March 8.Grammy-nominated Caroline Shaw’s Entr’acte will open the program. Shaw is the youngest recipient of the Pulitzer Prize in Music. “When I’m playing her music and I’ve read what she’s shared on her blog and webpage, that’s exactly her,” says Djokic. “Much of her music relates to older music. It’s not that she’s copying anybody, but she has a unique way of embracing the older sound in a completely new fashion, making it her own.” Entr’acte was originally written for and performed by the

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Creative Conversations Interview with Michelle Djokic

Creative Conversations with Michelle Djokic and Mandee Hammerstein

On WDVR’s Creative Conversations, Mandee Hammerstein interviews Grammy-nominated cellist and Artistic Director of the Concordia Chamber Players, Michelle Djokic. Together, Mandee and Michelle discuss Djokic’s lifelong passion for chamber music, art, the inspiring beauty of New Hope, as well as the collaborative process when commissioning world-premieres from CP’s roster of Grammy Award-winning & nominated talent. The Concordia Chamber players is a nonprofit organization in Solebury, PA and additionally offers complimentary, public rehearsal performances prior to each performance. Upcoming in-person and digital stage concerts are set for March 6th and April 24th, 2022. More at www.concordiaplayers.org Listen in at https://wdvrfm.org/creative-conversations

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Award Winning Composers from Concordia’s Past Performances

Here at Concordia Chamber Players we believe in presenting treasures of the chamber music repertoire while also presenting performers and composers that speak to the times. The 2022 Grammy Awards have recognized two of our featured composers Andy Akiho (April 24), and Caroline Shaw (March 6), with a nomination for Best Contemporary Composition. Clarice Assad who created Concordia’s first commission Obrigado is also a 2022 nominee for Best Contemporary Composition.  The NY Times recently featured the collaboration of SandBox Percussion and composer Andy Akiho’s Seven Pillars.  “Akiho has an uncanny gift for intricate rhythmic counterpoint, though the mathematical precision of the final product emerged through epic stretches of stream-of-consciousness play.” — New York Times Sandbox Percussion’s recording of Seven Pillars by Andy Akiho is a 2022 Grammy nominee for Best Chamber Music/ Small Ensemble Performance. The praise and recognition just keeps coming with the most recent inclusion of Pillar III in the NY Times 25 Best Classical Music Tracks of 2021.  Concordia is thrilled to present the award-winning Seven Pillars by Andy Akiho performed by Sandbox Percussion on our April 24th subscription concert. What they failed to mention in all the articles is that Andy Akiho composed Pillar IIIright here at Cradle Valley Farm after performing at our 2020 WinterFest celebration!  We are very proud of the

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Michelle Djokic featured on The Princeton Festival Podcast: Episode 2

For the second episode of The Princeton Festival Podcast, the Artistic Director of Concordia Chamber Players, Michelle Djokic, talks about how the award-winning group has performed and evolved over the years. Music featured in this episode includes Mendelssohn’s Piano Trio in C minor, performed by Concordia Chamber Players as part of The Princeton Festival’s 2019 season.

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Article from US 1 – September 2019

Concordia Chamber Players: Experience Exquisite, Rarely Heard Music Exquisite music, some rarely heard, presented in carefully curated programs and presented by renowned musicians in unique, intimate settings: that’s the promise that the Concordia Chamber Players has delivered for more than 20 years. Founded in 1997 in New Hope, Pennsylvania, Concordia prides itself on bringing the world’s best music to the greater Bucks County and Princeton area. Audiences have come to expect and relish witnessing the great masterpieces of the chamber music repertoire, spanning all centuries, performed by a stellar list of guest artists. Founder and artistic director, Michelle Djokic says, “We endeavor to unveil some lesser known gems while presenting compositions we have all come to treasure in a setting that welcomes both the ardent devotee and those who are just embarking on the discovery of all the wealth of witnessing live chamber music. The unique nature of the venues makes our performances destination events. We are known to seek out the opportunity to escape the sterile environment of commercial concert halls to find gems just a short distance from the big cities.” Concordia’s 2019-2020 season is ready to go and will once again deliver an extraordinary experience, including four

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Article from The Morning Call – April 2019

The Bucks County-based Concordia Chamber Players close the 2018-2019 season Sunday, April 28 at Trinity Church in Solebury (near New Hope) with a program pairing two works by contemporary composer Andy Akiho with a string quartet by Prokofiev. Featured will be Akiho’s “21” for cello and marimba, his “LIgNEouS” for marimba and string quartet, and Prokofiev’s String Quartet No. 2. Akiho, described by The New York Times as “mold breaking,” and “vital,” is a New York City-based composer and percussionist with a special interest in works for the marimba and steel pans, which he began playing while a student at the University of South Carolina. “21” was inspired by the 21st measure of the Fugue movement of Bach’s Violin Sonata No. 1. It calls for the cellist to also play a kick drum and trigger a looping pedal, joined by the marimba player who has some multitasking of his own in store. Featured are cellist Michelle Djoric, who is also Concordia Chamber Players artistic director, and Ian Rosenbaum on marimba. “LIgNEouS” refers to anything made, consisting of, or resembling wood. “This title was chosen because the marimba, violin, viola, and cello are all primarily made of wood,” says Akiho in

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Miho Saegusa

Concordia Chamber Players to feature works by female composers

Hopefully, not too far in the future, e when women composers will be regarded in the same light as their male colleagues, and not just as in “a league of their own,” to reference the popular 1992 film of that title. Until then, any opportunity a classical music lover gets to hear some great music written by women, however it is presented, should be indulged in. One such program of special merit takes place Sunday at Trinity Church in Solebury, near New Hope. The Bucks County-based Concordia Chamber Players, in their second concert of the season, will feature a program of compositions entirely by women composers spanning three centuries. The program features works by Ellen Taaffe Zwilich, Amy Beach, and Louise Farrenc. Opening the program is the Piano Quintet by Zwilich, a Florida native who became the first female composer to win the Pulitzer Prize in Music, and the first woman to be awarded a doctorate in composition from Juilliard, in 1975. Zwilich composed her quintet in 2011 for the Kalichstein-Laredo-Robinson Trio, violist Michael Tree, and bassist Harold Robinson. The work shares its instrumentation and the theme of its second movement with Schubert’s “Trout” Quintet, with which it is often

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Concordia’s Gift to Bucks County

Bravo, Brava, Bravi to The Concordia Chamber Players!  Founder and cellist Michelle Djokic has always assembled a stellar array of first-class musicians from all over the country, but on Sunday February 17th, they outdid themselves. Programming unfamiliar pieces all written by virtually unknown women composers from different periods of time, I was frankly not expecting to like the music at all, but au contraire, was blown away not only by the superb quality of the musicians’ performance, but by the beautifully unusual music. The two older composers dealt with society’s disapproval of women learning to perform and to compose music, but bravely followed their dreams despite opposition and obstacles in their way. Amy Beach composed and published under her husband’s name until he died, and after one of her successful performances was told “You’re one of the boys now, Amy!” as if that were the highest form of recognition. Contemporary Ellen Taafe Zwilich’s Quintet uses exactly the same instrumentation as Schubert’s famous “Trout” Quintet 191 years earlier, as does Louise Farrenc’s grand finale, but Zwilich, unlike Farrenc and Beach, has already been deservedly well-recognized and acclaimed in the world of music.  Louise Farrenc, earliest of the three composers, was on

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