CMA Announces More Than $950,000 in Grants for Small Ensembles and Presenters

For Immediate Release

Contact: Nichole L. Knight
212-242-2022 ext. 106

New York, NY (July 31, 2017)—Chamber Music America (CMA), the national network for ensemble music professionals, today announced the distribution of $951,545 through its four major grant programs: New Jazz Worksand Presenter Consortium for Jazz, supported by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation; Classical Commissioning, supported by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation; and the Residency Partnership Program, funded by Chamber Music America's Residency Endowment Fund.

This funding will provide key support for the creation, performance, and presentation of small ensemble works, as well as support community engagement and audience-building initiatives. The grantees in each program were selected by independent peer panels. A complete list of the 2017 grantees follows:

Funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation

A total of $447,000 was awarded to fifteen jazz ensembles through the New Jazz Works program, which supports the creation of new works by professional U.S.-based jazz artists and helps assure that these compositions will be heard through live performances and recordings.

Alchemy Sound Project (Rosendale, NY)
Composer: Erica Lindsay | Instrumentation: Flute/alto flute, clarinet/bass clarinet, oboe, trumpet/flugelhorn, trombone, piano, bass, drums

2017 New Jazz Works Grantees

Andrea Brachfeld Quartet (Jersey City, NJ)
Composer: Andrea Brachfeld | Instrumentation: Flute/alto flute, piano, bass, drums

Ben Wendel Group (Brooklyn, NY)
Composer: Ben Wendel | Instrumentation: Saxophone, bassoon, Fender Rhodes, guitar, piano, bass, drums

Craig Handy and 2nd Line Smith (Weehawken, NJ)
Composer: Craig Handy | Instrumentation: Saxophone, organ, sousaphone, drums/percussion, guitar, bass

The Curtis Brothers (Weehawken, NJ)
Composer: Zaccai Curtis | Instrumentation: Piano, bass, drums, alto saxophone, trumpet

Ian Carey Quintet + 1 (Richmond, CA)
Composer: Ian Carey | Instrumentation: Flute, bass clarinet, alto/tenor saxophones, trumpet, piano, bass, drums

Joshua Lawrence and Color Theory (New York, NY)
Composer: Joshua Lawrence | Instrumentation: Flute, trumpet/flugelhorn, trombone, alto saxophone, Fender Rhodes, piano, bass, drums

Kendrick Scott Oracle (New York, NY)
Composer: Kendrick Scott | Instrumentation: Soprano/tenor saxophones, bass clarinet, guitar, piano, bass, drums, electronics 

Manuel Valera Trio (New York, NY)
Composer: Manuel Valera | Instrumentation: Piano, bass, drums

Martin Bejerano Trio (Miami, FL)
Composer: Martin Bejerano | Instrumentation: Piano, bass, drums

Mickey Bass and the New York Powerhouse Ensemble (New York, NY)
Composer: Mickey Bass | Instrumentation: Bass, vibraphone, alto/tenor saxophones, trumpet, drums

Mike Holober and Balancing Act (Mount Kisco, NY)
Composer: Mike Holober | Instrumentation: Flute, soprano/alto/tenor saxophones, clarinet/bass clarinet, trumpet/flugelhorn, trombone, piano, bass, drums, voice 

Piano Iberico (Brooklyn, NY)
Composer: Chano Dominguez | Instrumentation: Piano, bass, percussion/hand percussion (palmas), foot percussion, voice

Samuel Torres Group (Long Island City, NY)
Composer: Samuel Torres | Instrumentation: Percussion, piano, bass, two trumpets, alto/tenor/baritone saxophones, trombone

Vardan Ovsepian Chamber Project (Glendale, CA)
Composer: Vardan Ovsepian | Instrumentation: Piano, flute, viola, cello, double bass, percussion

Funded by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

Twelve grants totaling $231,550 have been awarded through the Classical Commissioning program, which provides support to U.S.-based professional classical and world music ensembles and presenters for the creation and performance of new chamber works by American composers.

2017 Classical Commissioning Grantees

Attacca Quartet (New York, NY)
Composer: Chris Rogerson | Instrumentation: Two violins, viola, cello

Boston Musica Viva (Boston, MA)
Composer: Sebastian Currier | Instrumentation: Soprano, flute, clarinet, trumpet, violin, cello, piano, percussion

The Dorian Wind Quintet (New York, NY)
Composer: Billy Childs | Instrumentation: Flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, horn

Ensemble Dal Niente (Chicago, IL)
Composer: Erin Gee | Instrumentation: Two sopranos, flute, clarinet, cello, bass, two percussion

Enso String Quartet (New York, NY)
Composer: Alyssa Weinberg | Instrumentation: Two violins, viola, cello, clarinet

Eurasia Consort (Seattle, WA)
Composer: Alice Shields | Instrumentation: Soprano, alto flute, recorder, Renaissance harp, ud, theorbo, percussion

Garth Newel Music Center (Hot Springs, VA)
Composer: David Biedenbender | Instrumentation: Violin, viola, cello, piano

Longleash (Brooklyn, NY)
Composer: Shawn Jaeger | Instrumentation: Violin, cello, digital/prepared piano

Momenta Quartet (Bronx, NY)
Composer: Alvin Singleton | Instrumentation: Two violins, viola, cello

NOVA Chamber Music Series (Salt Lake City, UT)
Composer: Morris Rosenzweig | Instrumentation: Two violins, viola, cello, clarinet, prepared piano

Spektral Quartet (Chicago, IL)
Composer: Tonia Ko | Instrumentation: Two violins, viola, cello

Zéphyros Winds (Las Vegas, NV)
Composer: David Sanford | Instrumentation: Flute, oboe, clarinet/bass clarinet, bassoon, horn

Chamber Music America's commissioning programs are also supported by the Aaron Copland Fund for Music, the Amphion Foundation, the Alice M. Ditson Fund of Columbia University, and the Chamber Music America Commissioning Endowment Fund.

Funded by the Chamber Music America Residency Endowment Fund

The Residency Partnership Program supports ensembles and presenters in building awareness and appreciation for classical/contemporary, jazz, and world chamber music through community-based residencies that engage audiences beyond traditional concert settings. A total of $41,995 has been awarded to seven ensembles and two presenting organizations across the United States.


2017 Residency Partner Program Grantees

The 2017 grantees are:

  • • Apollo Chamber Players (Houston, TX) 
  • • Great Falls Symphony with the Cascade Quartet (Great Falls, MT) 
  • • Lawler + Fadoul (New York, NY) 
  • • Matt Davis' Aerial Photograph (New York, NY)
  • • The Playground Ensemble (Denver, CO)
  • • Sonic Forest (San Francisco, CA)
  • • Sylvan Winds (New York, NY) 
  • • Wendell Harrison Ensemble (Detroit, MI) 
  • • Women's Housing and Economic Development Corporation (WHEDco's Bronx Music Heritage Center)(Bronx, NY) with the Garifuna Jazz Ensemble

Funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation


Presenter Consortium for Jazz supports consortiums of three U.S. presenters to collectively engage up to three professional U.S. jazz ensembles. Project grants totaling $156,000 have been awarded to five consortiums (15 presenting organizations), which will receive an additional $75,000 in general operating support.


This year’s grantees are:


• Walker Arts Center (Minneapolis, MN),
• Krannert Center for Performing Arts (Urbana, IL)
• Wexner Center (Columbus, OH)
Presenting The Bad Plus with Bill Frisell


• Western Michigan University Foundation 
(Kalamazoo, MI)
• City of East Lansing/Summer Solstice Jazz Festival(East Lansing, MI)
• The Carr Center (Detroit, MI)
Presenting the Dafnis Prieto Sextet*

*Dafnis Prieto Sextet will perform Prieto's 2005 New Jazz Works commission, The Emotion Series: Taking the Soul for a Walk.


• Arts for Art (New York, NY), 
• CapitalBop (Washington, D.C.)
• Pittsburgh Cultural Trust (Pittsburgh, PA)
Presenting the Odean Pope Saxophone Choir


• Nameless Sound (Houston, TX),
• Epistrophy Arts (Austin, TX)
• The New Quorum (New Orleans, LA)
Presenting the Wadada Leo Smith - Golden Quartet*

*Wadada Leo Smith - Golden Quartet will perform Smith's 2010 New Jazz Works commission, Ten Freedom Summers.


• Acadiana Center for the Arts (Lafayette, LA)
• Arts Council of Greater Baton Rouge/River City Jazz Masters Concert Series (Baton Rouge, LA)
• Banner Series @ McNeese State University 
(Lake Charles, LA)
Presenting the Arturo Sandoval Sextet