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Friends of Chamber Music: Sybarite5
February 21 @ 3:00 pm
Sybarite5 is known for bridging genre gaps and bringing unlikely musical combinations together to create unique concert experiences. Sybarite5 will showcase its extensive playlist with groundbreaking new compositions including works by Portland’s own Kenji Bunch.
Sybarite5 is one of chamber music’s most dynamic ensembles, taking listeners on a musical journey of staggering breadth and depth, with new works by living composers, as well as the group’s favorite selections from Radiohead, Coltrane, Komitas, Piazzolla, and Pete Seeger… but as Strings Magazine says, “That doesn’t even begin to describe the range of their eclecticism or the depth of their repertoire.”
“Hyper-accurate yet fiercely vivacious” (I care if you listen) and ”Smart as a fox” (Limelight Magazine), New York City’s Sybarite5 is dazzling audiences around the world with their luxurious sound and unexpected programming. Equal parts passion, grit, and musical ecstasy, Sybarite5 is an intoxicating cocktail of post-genre musical goodness expressed through the virtuosity of Sami Merdinian and Sarah Whitney, violins; Angela Pickett, viola; Laura Metcalf, cello; and Louis Levitt, bass. This exciting quintet is constantly evolving, defying categorization, and has been keeping audiences on their toes for over a decade.
Sybarite5 has performed at the Library of Congress, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, and National Sawdust, with a decade residency at Nancy Manocherian’s Cell Theatre. In addition to its own groundbreaking, portable music festival, Forward Festival, Sybarite5 has appeared at Ravinia, Caramoor, Wolf Trap, Grand Teton, Aspen, Interlochen, Chautauqua, Canada’s Tuckamore Music Festival, the New Docta International Music Festival in Cordoba, and the Osaka Festa in Japan.
Known as a “virtuosic ensemble with an original and risk-taking vision” (Audiophile Audition Magazine), no group has been more influential in the development of new string quintets than Sybarite5. In 2018 they released the album Outliers, showcasing their creation and performance of new American concert music, and debuting at No. 1 on Billboard’s Traditional Classical Charts. Live From New York (2020) is a collection of “happily diverse” music from the ensemble’s shows at The Cell Theatre in New York City, with featured guests including world percussionist and Silkroad co-artistic director Shane Shanahan, vocalist Blythe Gaissert, and Iranian santoor player Ehsan Matoori. Other successful collaborations include Hacked Theremins’ creator and composer Jakub Ciupinski and vocalist Clarice Assad.
Committed to community engagement and educational activities, Sybarite5 works with over 5,000 students annually and is known for their engaging presentations in entrepreneurship and communication.