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Spoleto Festival USA Announces 2018 Bank Of America Chamber Music Series Programs

Spoleto Festival USA Announces 2018 Bank Of America Chamber Music Series Programs

Geoff Nuttall, Spoleto Festival USA's Charles E. and Andrea L. Volpe Director for Chamber Music, today announced details of the Festival's 2018 Bank of America Chamber Music series, which comprises 11 programs-33 total concerts-throughout the Festival season (May 25 - June 10). A backbone of the Festival since 1977, the series presents performances twice daily at Charleston's historic Dock Street Theatre, and its diverse repertoire reflects Mr. Nuttall's eclectic tastes and passion for music within and beyond the traditional canon.

The 2018 series includes works dating from the English Renaissance to the present day, including world premieres from composer-in-residence Doug Balliett. Mr. Nuttall's St. Lawrence String Quartet performs alongside guests the JACK Quartet, and additional guest artists include pianist Inon Barnatan, countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo, tenor Paul Groves, and singers from the Westminster Choir, among others. Mr. Nuttall hosts each program, and his commentary is interspersed throughout.

Tickets to the 2018 Bank of America Chamber Music series can be purchased anytime at or by calling the Festival box office at (843) 579-3100 from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Saturdays. Beginning May 1, tickets will be available at the box office as the Charleston Gaillard Center (95 Calhoun Street). Images are available for download from the Festival's media photo gallery.

New to the Festival will be the JACK Quartet, one of the world's most in-demand string ensembles. Lauded for their dedication to new American compositions, the Quartet will perform during Programs I - V in works by such composers as composer-in-residence Doug Balliett, Philip Glass, Pauline Oliveros, and Joshua Roman. Highlights include Glass's recent String Quartet No. 8, which the Quartet premiered in February 2018, and the world premiere of Balliett's Gawain's Journey alongside the St. Lawrence String Quartet.

Countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo, who in 2017 sang the title role in Spoleto Festival USA's Farnace, will also perform during Programs I - III. Mr. Costanzo's performances include the Peggy Lee song "Fever," "Somewhere" by Leonard Bernstein, and works by composers John Dowland and George Frideric Handel. Programs IV - VII will feature pianist Inon Barnatan in works by Beethoven, Schubert, Schumann, Brahms, Rachmaninoff, and Prokofiev.

Based in New York City, composer-in-residence Doug Balliett-also an accomplished and active double bassist, radio personality, and Juilliard School professor-will present four works during the Festival, including two world premieres: Gawain's Journey, an octet for the St. Lawrence String Quartet and JACK Quartet, and Fanfare for Trombone, Double Bass, and Bass Clarinet. Mr. Balliett will also play double bass on eight of the 11 programs, including in the premiere of his Fanfare, in which he is joined by trombonist Peter Moore and clarinetist Todd Palmer. Additionally, he has arranged the 1986 Queen song "Who Wants to Live Forever" for 12 musicians. Appearing on Program XI, the arrangement will feature tenor Paul Groves, who has performed with the Metropolitan Opera for 25 seasons. Program XI will also feature several male voices of the Westminster Choir singing Franz Schubert's "Gesang der Geister über den Wassern," N*E*R*D 714, conducted by Festival Director for Choral Activities Joe Miller.

The Bank of America Chamber Music series has championed fresh musical talents, often in the early stages of their careers. This year, Festival debuts will include English trombonist Peter Moore, who, in 2014 at just 18 years old, became the youngest musician ever appointed to the London Symphony Orchestra as co-principal trombonist-a title he continues to hold today. He will be heard in such works as Robert Schumann's Fantasiestücke, op.73 (Program VI) and Brian Lynn's Doolallynastics (A Brief Torture for Solo Trombone) (Program VIII). Returning artists include pianists Pedja Muzijevic and Gilles Vonsattel, oboist James Austin Smith, violinist Livia Sohn, clarinetist Todd Palmer, violists Meena Bhasin and Masumi Rostad, and cellists Nina Lee and Joshua Roman.

Each of the Bank of America Chamber Music series' 11 programs are performed three times with two performances daily at 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. in the 463-seat Dock Street Theatre, located at 135 Church Street. The series is also recorded and broadcast by South Carolina Public Radio and syndicated nationally and internationally by the WFMT Radio Network.

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