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Range is a key component in Sō Percussion’s up to date chamber works


Sō Percussion, from left, Adam Sliwinski, Josh Quillen, Eric Cha-Beach and founder Jason Treuting, is understood for creating new music by means of rhythmic experiments. The up to date chamber-music quartet will carry out Saturday on the Eccles Center for the Performing Arts.
Photo by Stefen Cohen

Sō Percussion’s mission is to “create a new model of egalitarian artistic collaboration that respects history, champions innovation and curiosity, and creates an essential social bond through service to our audiences and our communities.”

The chamber music ensemble, which is scheduled to carry out on April 9 on the Eccles Center for the Performing Arts, does that by means of variety, fairness, inclusion and accessibility, stated founder Jason Treuting.

“We talk about the music, nerdily, as a flexible instrumentational form of music,” he stated. “In classical music, that means we try to discover anything new about the music we play.”



By doing so, Sō Percussion has established programming for various voices who give new cultural views with a view to make a constructive influence locally and the music business, in keeping with Treuting.

The programming contains versatile commissions, which, in keeping with the Sō Percussion web site, “removes barriers of access to performers and composers, and which encourages bringing many voices into the room.”



It additionally produces new interpretations of previous works created by BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ composers, working with non-male and non-white composers on every, and the New Music Equity Action Pledge, a program Sō Percussion co-founded to work actively in opposition to inequity and racism, Treuting stated.

“It’s about putting forth the inclusive vibe,” he stated.

Sō Percussion’s various method to presenting its music additionally provides audiences a uncommon look “behind the scenes,” so to talk, Treuting stated.

“We are playing new and contemporary pieces of music, and I think it’s interesting for an audience to see the way these sounds are made,” he stated.

There is a thriller of the way in which a chunk is performed, however not a thriller to seeing the group hitting a flower pot with a stick throughout a efficiency, Treuting stated.

“Everybody can imagine themselves experimenting with sounds, and everybody has some moment in time when they’ve gotten a pot out of the kitchen or made a funky sound on a wine glass during a dinner party,” he stated. “I think as a group, we were psyched to organize those sounds with composer friends of ours, and, later, for ourselves, to bring what can be edgy, contemporary music into the world in a way that is inviting.”

The seeds of Sō Percussion sprouted in 1999, after Treuting and a few of his mates met on the Yale School of Music.

“We were excited about the professor, Robert van Sice,” Treuting stated. “He was a marimba player at the time, and we were all into checking out the instrument.”

Treuting and his classmates quickly discovered camaraderie enjoying music collectively.

“We were assigned to play this pretty thick piece of chamber music and spent all the time in the music room putting it together,” he stated. “We realized we loved working and being together. We would go out and grab drinks afterwards, and get together beforehand for coffee.”

Treuting’s sister, Jenise Treuting, named the ensemble after its members requested an abundance of family and friends for concepts.

Jenise Treuting, an English and Japanese translator, thought the calligraphy for the Japanese phrase “sō” was symbolic in its meanings — “to play an instrument,” “be successful,” “to move forward” and “to present to a leader or higher power.”

The identify caught on, and the group rapidly started commissioning works and asking their composer mates to write down some new music for them, Treuting stated.

“We moved our studio from New Haven to Brooklyn in 2003-04 and that’s where we’ve been ever since,” he stated.

Josh Quillen, the quartet’s professional metal drum artist, formally joined in 2006.

“I first heard of Sō when I was an undergrad at the University of Akron and connected with them through a weird moment of serendipity,” he stated.

Quillen performed hand drums for a church choir close to Akron that was run by the mom of Adam Sliwinski, who had joined Sō Percussion in 2002.

“After playing for the church choir, Adam’s mom asked if I had heard of the group, so I started looking into them,” he stated. “One thing led to another, and I met Robert van Sice, when he came to the University of Akron for a master class.”

Soon afterward, Quillen transferred to Yale.

“A spot opened with Sō, and I started subbing in the group in February 2006, and then joined later that summer,” he stated.

In one other spark of serendipity, Sō Percussion’s Park City efficiency will embody, “Amid the Noise,” the primary tune Quillen performed with the group 16 years in the past.

“It wasn’t a commission, and I didn’t have a prescribed part to play,” he stated. “We were just adapting stuff for the steel pan and synthesizer.”

In addition, Sō Percussion, which additionally contains fellow member Eric Cha-Beach, will carry out this system with members of the Park City High School music division, Quillen stated.

“It’s wild to think about the fun journey I’ve been on with the group,” he stated.



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