Hamilton College Performing Arts announces an exciting season of music, theater and dance for the 2018-19 season in Wellin Hall, Schambach Center for Music and the Performing Arts. All performances are at 7:30 p.m., unless otherwise noted.
The season opens with the St. Lawrence String Quartet on Saturday, Sept. 15. SLSQ is renowned for the intensity of its performances, its breadth of repertoire, and its commitment to concert experiences that are at once intellectually exciting and emotionally alive. The program includes Haydn’s Quartet in C Major, Op. 33, No. 3, Berg’s String Quartet, Op. 3, and Tchaikovsky’s Quartet No. 3 in E-flat Minor, Op. 30.
Grammy-nominated fiddler Bruce Molsky returns to Hamilton on Friday, Sept. 21, with Molsky’s Mountain Drifters, a brand-new trio featuring Allison de Groot, banjo, and Stash
Wyslouch, guitar for an evening of traditional music. Mother Jones calls Molsky, “one of America’s premier fiddling talents,” while Allison de Groot combines wide-ranging virtuosity and passion for old-time music, and Boston-based Stash Wyslouch is one of bluegrass’s great young genre-bending pioneers.
Ephrat Asherie Dance continues the fall series on Saturday, Oct. 6, with Odeon, an original dance work for seven dancers and four musicians. This is the second collaboration between sister and brother team Ephrat (choreographer) and Ehud (music director) Asherie. Set to the music of Brazilian composer Ernesto Nazareth, this work takes a hybrid approach to movement. Odeon delves into what happens when you bring together the extended family of street and club dances — including breaking, hip hop, house and vogue — remix them, pick them apart and challenge them to inhabit unfamiliar spatial and choreographic contexts.
San Jose Taiko completes the fall series with a family-friendly evening on Friday, Nov. 2. San Jose Taiko has been mesmerizing audiences since 1973 with the powerful, spellbinding, and propulsive sounds of the taiko. Inspired by traditional Japanese drumming, SJT performers express the beauty and harmony of the human spirit through the voice of the taiko as they create new dimensions in Asian American movement and music.
Jazz pianist Christian Sands opens the spring semester on Saturday, Feb. 2. Five-time Grammy nominee Christian Sands is an emerging jazz force. His abundant piano technique perfectly matches his conception, accomplishing a much deeper musical goal: a fresh look at the entire language of jazz. Christian says, “My music is about teaching the way of jazz and keeping it alive.” Whether it’s stride, swing, bebop, progressive, fusion, Brazilian or Afro-Cuban, Sands develops the past while providing unusual and stimulating vehicles for the present and for the future.
Continuing in February, the Albany Symphony Orchestra makes its Hamilton College debut on Friday, Feb. 8. Grammy Award-winning conductor David Alan Miller leads the Albany Symphony in Chopin’s Piano Concerto No. 2, with Orion Weiss, piano; a new work by Annika Socolofsky; and Schumann’s Symphony No. 2.
The JACK Quartet continues the spring semester on Feb. 23. The Washington Post calls the JACK Quartet “the go-to quartet for contemporary music, tying impeccable musicianship to intellectual ferocity and a take-no-prisoners sense of commitment.” This performance includes a premiere by Hamilton’s Ryan Carter involving audience participation featuring motion-controlled interactive electronic sounds synthesized on, and diffused from mobile devices.
Ping Chong + Company presents Beyond Sacred: Voices of Muslim Identity on Saturday, March 27.
Beyond Sacred illuminates the daily experiences of five young Muslim Americans who came of age in a post-9/11 society. The cast members are from different cultural and ethnic backgrounds and reflect a wide range of Muslim identities, including those who have converted to Islam, those who were raised Muslim but have since left the faith, those who identify as “culturally” Muslim, and those who are observant on a daily basis.
Hailed as “the premier men’s vocal ensemble in the United States” (Fanfare), Cantus presents Alone Together on Friday, April 5. In today’s technological society, our ability to communicate has never been more advanced; nevertheless, people and communities still struggle to connect in meaningful ways. This program explores the challenges of connecting in our modern age through works by Beethoven and Bernstein paired with such contemporary composers as Jennifer Higdon, David Lang, and Gabriel Kahane. Alone Together will also feature a new, multi-movement work by Libby Larsen.
The season ends on Saturday, April 13 with Pushed Aside: Reclaiming Gage, an original opera produced Syracuse’s Society for New Music. Pushed Aside: Reclaiming Gage is the story of Matilda Joslyn Gage, the unknown third member of the triumvirate of early suffragists, which included Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton, who energized the women’s rights movement. This opera tells how they came together in the early 1850s, and then had their great split in 1890, which resulted in Matilda being “pushed aside,” right out of the history books.
All concerts will take place in Wellin Hall, Schambach Center for Music and the Performing Arts. Seating is general admission. Individual ticket prices are $20 for adults, $15 for senior citizens and Hamilton employees, and $5 for students. Discounted series rates are available. For more information, call the box office at 859-4331 or visit hamilton.edu/performingarts.