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Todd Reynolds and More Set for Rite of Summer Music Festival Finale, 9/3

Pianists and Artistic Directors Blair McMillen and Pam Goldberg present the Rite of Summer Music Festival, taking place Summer 2012 on Governors Island, New York City.

This marks the return of the first classical-contemporary concert series on Governors Island, a place The New York Times has called a “Playground for the Arts.” The aim of the Festival is simple: to present the highest quality live performances, and to bring free contemporary classical music to as many people as possible in a relaxed, fun, outdoor setting.

(Photo credit: Lynn Lane Photography)

Rite of Summer kicked off July 7th with folk-inspired chamber group Ljova and The Kontraband in a program of original compositions deeply rooted in classical forms, imbued with improvisations on Eastern-European and Gypsy melodies, and Latin rhythms; selected folk material, as well as compositions by Igor Stravinsky, John Jacob Niles & others. Next, the high-octane JACK Quartet presented a program of Guillaume de Machaut arr. by Ari Streisfeld, Charles Ives, Brian Baumbusch, Ken Thomson, Payton MacDonald and David Crowell on Saturday, August 4th on Colonels’ Row.

In a blazing Labor Day finale to Rite of Summer’s 2012 season, Todd Reynolds, "New York's reigning Jazz and Classical Violinist" (The New Yorker), and fiddle-player of choice for avant-gardists everywhere, has assembled a stellar cast of characters to explore the vortex where bluegrass, electronica, minimalism and classical music swirl. Featuring music of glass harmonica virtuoso Jonny Rodgers, avant-bluegrass guitarist Jordan Tice (The Jordan Tice Trio), and the singular percussionist Mathias Kunzli, currently on tour with Regina Spektor. This will take place on Colonels’ Row on Monday, September 3rd.

Each Rite of Summer show is presented twice the same day, at 1pm and 3pm, for each respective date**. Audiences should feel free to walk by, stop and listen, lay down a picnic blanket and relax, eat lunch, intermingle, and take in these exciting live performances.

Governors Island is a short 5-minute ferry ride from South Ferry, in lower Manhattan and a 3-minute ride from Brooklyn. Ferries and concerts are free. For a full ferry schedule, visit For more information, visit

**Rain dates/times for each scheduled concert will be as follows, at 1pm and 3pm: Todd Reynolds September 9, 2012.

Todd Reynolds

Todd Reynolds, violinist, composer, educator and technologist is known as one of the founding fathers of the hybrid-musician movement and one of the most active and versatile proponents of what he calls ‘present music’. The violinist of choice for Steve Reich, Meredith Monk, Bang on a Can, and a founder of the string quartet known as Ethel, his compositional and performance style is a hybrid of old and new technology, multi-disciplinary aesthetic and pan-genre composition and improvisation.

Reynolds’ music has been called “a charming, multi-mood extravaganza, playful like Milhaud, but hard- edged like Hendrix” (Strings Magazine), and his countless premieres and performances of everything from classical music to Jazz to Rock‘n’Roll seem to redefine the concert hall and underground club as undeniably and unavoidably intertwined. He has just released his double CD set, Outerborough on Innova Recordings, featuring InSide, a collection of his own music, paired with OutSide, music written by a veritable who’s who of contemporary composers.

A forerunner in the expansion of the violin beyond its classical and ‘wood-bound’ tradition, Reynolds electrifies in concert, weaves together composed and improvised segments, and makes use of computer technology and digital loops to sculpt his sounds in real time, seamlessly integrating minimalist, pop, Jazz, Indian, African, Celtic and indigenous folk musics into his own sonic blend. As a cross-genre improviser and collaborator, he has appeared and/or recorded with such artists as Anthony Braxton, Uri Caine, John Cale, Steve Coleman, Joe Jackson, Dave Liebman, Yo-Yo Ma, Graham Nash, Greg Osby, Steve Reich, Marcus Roberts and Todd Rundgren, and has commissioned and premiered countless numbers of new works by America’s most compelling composers, including John King, Phil Kline, Michael Gordon, Neil Rolnick, Julia Wolfe, David Lang, Evan Ziporyn and Randall Wolff. His interdisciplinary work includes ongoing collaborations with SoundPainter Walter Thompson as well as media artists Bill Morrison and Luke DuBois and sound artist Jody Elff.
Reynolds is a founder of the band known as Ethel, a critically acclaimed amplified string quartet, with whom he wrote and toured internationally for seven years. He has also produced Still Life With Microphone, an ongoing theater piece which incorporates his own written and improvised music, compositions written for him, and elements of video and theatrical arts. Nuove Uova [new eggs], new works for violin and electricity, another Todd Reynolds production is a ‘new-music cabaret’ of sorts, having as its home Joe’s Pub in Manhattan. The Todd Reynolds String Quartet and Typical Music, an avant piano trio featuring Ashley Bathgate and Vicky Chow from the Bang on a Can All-Stars, continue to commission, perform and record music from Contemporary Music’s brightest stars.

Jonny Rodgers

From the Yale University dominated town of New Haven, CT Jonny Rodgers writes beautiful, quirky songs using guitars, tuned wine glasses, electronics and a unique chamber orchestra.
He is also a composer/producer, writing chamber, orchestral and choral music for concert and for films. His formative musical years were spent writing, touring and recording with his brother Steve Rodgers in the indie band Mighty Purple.

Jonny has also played for the bands Ten Shekel Shirt, NYC’s classical-crossover band Awry (now My Brightest Diamond), the electronic artist Son Lux, the theatrical pop band Faux Fix, and many others.

Jonny has collaborated with many talented musicians from the world of Classical and New Music. His latest full album, The Aviary, was originally written and entirely scored as a live show with a 9-piece chamber orchestra featuring highly unusual elements, such as Tuned Wine Glasses and Steel Drum.

His newest material prominently features Tuned Wine Glasses, Guitars and Electronics with live loops used in unexpected ways. He lives in an extended community of friends, teaches, gardens and raises chickens.

Jordan Tice

Jordan Tice is a guitarist and composer from Annapolis, Md., who currently makes his home in Brooklyn, NY. The son of two bluegrass musicians, he grew up playing with various bluegrass bands around Maryland until 2005 when he enrolled at Towson University to study music on full scholarship. In addition to his studies, the next four years were also marked by performances and recordings with the likes of Mark Schatz and friends, Frank Wakefield, Darol Anger, and "Corbett, Chrisman, and Tice" featuring Wes Corbett on banjo and Simon Chrisman on hammered dulcimer. Jordan's collaboration with Corbett and Chrisman yielded a self titled record which was listed as one of the Chicago Tribune's top 5 "best compact discs of the year" in the bluegrass/newgrass category in 2008. Also in 2008, Jordan released his second record as a leader entitled "Long Story". The record, featuring all Tice originals as well as an all-star band of Casey Driessen, Noam Pikelny, Andy Hall, and Mark Schatz, brought about rave reviews from acoustic music publications for its "engaging and melodic tunes" and "inspired solos" (Bluegrass Unlimited) as well as being a "very musical album" (The Bluegrass Blog).

Jordan's current project, The Jordan Tice Trio, features Paul Kowert (Punch Brothers) on bass, and Simon Chrisman on hammered dulcimer. Their debut release "The Secret History" released in late 2011 has been praised as containing "refinement and maturity" as well as "extraordinary execution". In addition to performing with the trio, Jordan can be seen playing with Tony Trischka, the Footworks Percussive Dance Ensemble, The Dan Trueman/Brittany Haas Band, Lily Henley, and Mariel Vandersteel.

Mathias Kunzli

Hailing from Switzerland, multi-disciplined drummer/percussionist Mathias Kunzli has become ubiquitous in the New York City music scene. He can be found most every night of the week in some of Manhattan and Brooklyn’s finest concert venues, performing in a variety of styles, with artists and bands of many genres.

Music has guided Kunzli’s career trajectory for over two decades now. Born in Switzerland in 1975, Mathias started to play drums at age thirteen and soon he got involved with several European rock, pop and folk groups. He attended the Dante Agostini Drum School in Olten, Switzerland, where he won numerous diplomas and awards for his outstanding performances. He also became the drummer for the Swiss Youth Jazz Orchestra, a national group that toured Switzerland and Italy, for five consecutive years.

In 1995, Kunzli received two scholarships from Boston’s prestigious Berklee College of Music and moved to the States. He graduated in December 1998 and has made New York City his residence ever since.

Mathias is grateful for having had the privilege of studying with a great and diverse roster of teachers including Jamey Haddad, Zohar Fresco, Joe Hunt, Ian Froman, Giovanni Hidalgo, Adam Nussbaum, Danny Gottlieb, Tommy Campbell, Hal Crook, Greg Hopkins, Marco Kaeppeli and Fritz Renold.

His desire and ability to adapt to a wide range of musical styles have enabled him to tour extensively in countries such as Switzerland, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Austria, Belgium, Luxembourg, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, England, Poland, Monte-Negro, Croatia, Slovenia, USA, Canada, Aruba, Mexico, South Africa, Hungary, Holland, Czeck Republic, Macedonia.

Kunzli has appeared in some of the world’s most prestigious concert halls, arenas, and festivals including Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Montreal Jazz Festival, Montreux Jazz Festival, Monterey Jazz Festival, and many more.

As a drummer and percussionist he has had the chance to collaborate with artists as varied as Regina Spektor, Moby, Lauryn Hill, Yo-Yo Ma Silk Road Project, Airto Moreira, Flora Purim, Vieux Farka Toure, Oscar Castro-Neves, Gary Brown, Randy Brecker, Bob Berg, Marc Ribot, John Zorn’s Electric Masada, Alessandra Belloni, Bobby Watson, Jerry Bergonzi, Hal Crook, George Garzone, Jamey Haddad, Mark Soskin, Herb Pomeroy, Bill Pierce, Cecil Bridgewater, John Lockwood, Lenny Hochmann, Yanka Roupkina, Theodosii Spassov, Bakithi Kumalo, Tony Cedras, Oscar Stagnaro, Savina Yannatou, Dave Samuels, The Paul Winter Consort, Mike Richmond, Donny McCaslin, Eugene Friesen, Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, Matt Dariau, Frank London, Gary Burton, Makoto Ozone, Gina Gershon, Keyhan Kalhor, Mikael Burishnikov, Mark Gould, Mary Wilson, Steve Gorn, Howard Johnson.

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