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Classical 101

Get to Know NYC's Bearthoven This Week in Columbus

They look like a cross between jazz players and Brooklynites out on the town, but the trio Bearthoven also has serious conservatory training and a strong rudder in the tides of New Music.

The NYC-based ensemble is coming home to Columbus for a concert Wednesday at Short North Stage, free to all courtesy of the Johnstone Fund for New Music. So, I thought I'd get to know the guys behind the bear masks  before they take the stage. 

Here, before we get ahead of ourselves, take a listen to how these guys can play: 

https://soundcloud.com/bearthoven/modul-26-nik-bartsch

Who is Bearthoven? 

Karl Larson (piano), Pat Swoboda (bass), Matt Evans (anything and everything percussion) make up the trio, but their focus on performing new music and commissioned compositions sort of expands their stage to include a plethora of composers as well. In fact, the small ensemble performed over ten newly commissioned works in their first two seasons back in 2013. 

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Credit http://www.bearthoven.com/photos/a6bgspkmvh9io1s5ee18zad8gu6st9
Karl, Matt, and Pat know how to mix modesty with forward momentum. Their ensemble endeavors to promote new compositions as a rule.

 

This is not the only gig for the members of Bearthoven, either. This trio is more like a biosphere of collaborative and contemporary music summed in three MidWestern guys.

You might recognize Karl's name from other Johnstone Fund concerts at Short North Stage such as last year's concert of Messiaen's "Harawi" song cycle with soprano Liz Pearse. Likewise, Matt is a member of the incredible percussion trio Tigue, and Pat has a steady stream of solo gigs in Brooklyn and throughout Europe

 

RS52127_kburkett_bearthoven_006.JPG
Credit http://www.bearthoven.com/photos/z4wd4jrpf1iyy8cpahoipxuptkya04
Karl Larson, Matt Evans, and Pat Swoboda form the ensemble Bearthoven as well as parts of several other ensembles and solo acts performing across the US and Europe.

This week's performance features: 

Ken Thomson: Grizzly

Amanda FeerySun Stands Still, (world premiere)

Adrian Knight: The Ringing World, (world premiere)

Charlie WilmothSilver Eye (world premiere)

Nik BartschModul 26

 

The Columbus // NYC New Music Exchange

Along with the Johnstone Fund for New Music and New Music at Short North Stage, this concert is the work of The Columbus // NYC New Music Exchange, aka CNX. This group, directed by Anthony Vine, works to unite artists and supporters between both New York City and Columbus; a lucrative pipeline of sustainable creativity. Be sure to keep this organization on your radar since they have a good sense of the direction of sustainability in the arts.