The University of Central Arkansas will welcome the Meridian Arts Ensemble as artists in residence for the week of April 2-6, in conjunction with the Mid-South Horn Workshop.
The residency will culminate with a public performance in Snow Fine Arts Center on Tuesday, April 3, at 7:30 p.m. The concert is free and open to the public.
The Meridian Arts Ensemble is made up of five brass players and one percussionist, all based in New York City. Founded in 1987, with nine commercial CD releases, more than 50 premieres, and performances on four continents and in 49 states, Meridian's exciting and ambitious musical approach has changed the face of classical music.
The residency will include chamber music, brass, jazz improv, free improvisation, and composition clinics over a six-day span.
“A residency, by a group of this stature, is phenomenal,” said Dr. Brent Shires, assistant professor of horn, said. “These are seasoned musicians that work and live in New York. Their careers, together, span many different institutions.”
Meridian’s catalog of nine CDs on the Channel Classics label represents an equally broad look at the music of today. From an album of Baroque and Renaissance music to the latest release exploring the music of Central and South America, Meridian’s discs have garnered critical acclaim and a large and passionate popular following.
Meridian Arts Ensemble has succeeded in bringing classical music to popular audiences.
“This is incredible stuff,” Shires said. “This is some of the highest levels of art from New York City. For that to come here, it’s kind of like the equivalent of Crystal Bridges. We get a piece of some of that heady, crazy, art-centered culture.”
Now a faculty ensemble at the prestigious Manhattan School of Music, Meridian consistently attracts a diverse audience base. The ensemble has worked to keep the traditions of classical music alive, to spread the appeal of these traditions and to revisit these traditions from a contemporary sensibility.
For more details and information about Meridian Arts Ensemble, visit facebook.com/meridianartsensemble or meridianartsensemble.com or contact Shires at 501-450-5768or by email at email@example.com