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Claire Bryant & Friends, featuring Decoda and Attacca Quarter to perform at the FAC
Claire Bryant (BW).jpg
Claire Bryant

The Fine Arts Center (FAC) of Kershaw County presents the third installment of the three-part Chamber Music Series with Claire Bryant & Friends featuring Decoda -- the Affiliate Ensemble of Carnegie Hall -- and the internationally acclaimed Attacca Quartet on Thursday, April 4 at 7 p.m. in the Wood Auditorium. Four Decoda artists will partner with New York City’s Attacca Quartet to present a concert at the FAC featuring works by Pulitzer Prize composer Caroline Shaw, Decoda’s own Brad Balliett, Mozart, and Beethoven.  

Decoda returns to the FAC and to the Lee Correctional Institution April 1-6 for its nationally celebrated songwriting program and residency called Music for Transformation. The sixth annual workshop at Lee Correctional, South Carolina’s largest maximum security prison, will be called Letters from Lee. In April 2018, a mass riot occurred at the Lee Correctional Institution tragically claiming the lives of seven residents and critically injuring 17 more. April’s week-long residency culminates in a side-by-side performance behind the prison walls on April 6 featuring original musical works written by the residents of Lee. Letters from Lee, an anthology of songs based on the participants’ own creative writing, seeks to tell the story of who these people really are while illuminating the realities of incarceration in America today.  

Also on April 4, the Bassett Gallery will welcome artists Philip Hultgren and Stephen Nevitt to the FAC and patrons are invited to the open reception for the exhibit at 5:30 p.m. prior to the 7 p.m. concert.

Tickets for the concert are $30 in advance for adults, $35 day of, and $15 for students. For tickets or more information, please stop by the FAC Box Office, 810 Lyttleton St. in Camden, call (803) 425-7676, or visit www.fineartscenter.org.

About Decoda

A “collective of some of the brightest young classical musicians in the world...” (TimeOutNY), Decoda is dedicated to creating dynamic performances and creative projects designed for social impact. Decoda’s pursuits place equal emphasis on artistry and engagement to create meaningful musical experiences around the globe through concerts in major international venues and neighborhood projects with vibrant community partners.

 At home in New York City, Decoda works with partner organizations such as WQXR, the Police Athletic League, New York City Police Department, and New York City Administration for Children’s Services to engage a diverse cross-section of the city through creative songwriting workshops and interactive performances that promote collaboration and compassion. Music for Transformation, Decoda’s social justice initiative, empowers vulnerable and disenfranchised voices of incarcerated individuals and has been recognized by CNN, the Huffington Post, Associated Press, The Washington Post, and Billboard magazine. Other ongoing programs, such as the annual Decoda Skidmore Chamber Music Institute and residencies at the Royal Academy of Scotland and Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London as Resident Ensemble of Creative Performance, serve to expand the global community of audience-centric performers and to create a ripple effect of deep engagement through music around the world.

As the Affiliate Ensemble of Carnegie Hall, Decoda’s activities are anchored in creating compelling performances. During the 2018-19 season, Decoda debuts include two concerts presented by Carnegie Hall and a first appearance at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Decoda’s past engagements include performances at the Southbank Centre and the Barbican (London), Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (Germany), Abu Dhabi Music & Arts Festival (UAE), Mainly Mozart Festival (San Diego), Bay Chamber Concerts (Maine), Við Djúpið Festival (Iceland), Carnegie Kids @ Suntory Hall (Tokyo), National Center for the Performing Arts (Mumbai), Programa de Educación Musical Fomento Cultural Banamex & Carnegie Hall (Mexico), the Performing Arts Center at State University of New York - Purchase, the Chelsea Music Festival, Metropolitan Museum of Art, and National Sawdust in New York City.

Decoda was founded in 2012 by alumni of Ensemble Connect, a two-year fellowship program of Carnegie Hall, The Juilliard School, and the Weill Institute in partnership with the NYC Department of Education.

To learn more, visit decodamusic.org.

About Attacca Quartet

The internationally acclaimed Attacca Quartet is one of the most dynamic ensembles of its generation. Praised by The Strad for possessing “maturity beyond its members’ years,” they were formed at the Juilliard School in 2003 and made their professional debut in 2007 as part of the Artists International Winners Series in Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall. From 2011 to 2013, the ensemble served as the Juilliard Graduate Resident String Quartet, and for the 2014-2015 season it was selected as the Quartet in Residence by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. As stated by The Washington Post, “Mastery like this is scarce enough in quartets that have played together for decades.”

During the 2017-2018 season, the Attacca Quartet toured extensively throughout the United States and abroad. Highlights of the season included appearances at Wolf Trap, Carolina Performing Arts, Converse College, Bay Chamber Concerts, Cedarhurst Chamber Music, Chamber Music Society of Central Kentucky, Glema Mahr, Cranbrook Music Guild, Huntsville Chamber Music Guild, Mobile Chamber Music, Bologna Performing Arts, Oak Ridge Civic Music Association, Lincoln Friends of Chamber Music, Friends of Music in Troy, Symphony Augusta, Florida Keys Concert Association, Palm Beach State College, the Garmany Chamber Music Series, Lyrica Chamber Music and Carnegie Hall Neighborhood Concerts in New York. The group also presented an ongoing series at Trinity Lutheran Church in Manhattan entitled “Based on Beethoven,” featuring performances of the complete Beethoven string quartets. The group currently serves as the Ensemble-in-Residence at the School of Music at Texas State University.

The Attacca Quartet’s most recent album release included string quartet works of Michael Ippolito. These works were performed as part of the group’s residency at National Sawdust in Brooklyn, including three concerts of works by living composers. The group’s next recording project will feature string quartet works of Caroline Shaw.

The Attacca Quartet recently completed a recording project of Haydn’s masterwork “The Seven Last Words of Christ on the Cross,” arranged by Andrew Yee and the Attacca Quartet. In his review for Gramophone, Donald Rosenberg wrote, “The Attacca Quartet explores the work’s range of expressive moods with utmost sensitivity to nuance and interplay .... They triumph in every respect, and are captured in such vivid sound that no telling Haydn detail is allowed to go unheard.” TheWholeNote.com wrote, “It’s easily the most satisfying string version of the work that I’ve heard.”

In 2013, the quartet released the complete works for string quartet by John Adams on Azica Records. It was praised by Steve Smith of The New York Times as a “vivacious, compelling set,” describing the Attacca Quartet’s playing as “exuberant, funky, and … exactingly nuanced.” The Boston Globe also praised the release, stating, “Few [recent recordings] are as consequential as ‘Fellow Traveler,’ … superb performances.” The album was the recipient of the 2013 National Federation of Music Clubs Centennial Chamber Music Award. The quartet has been honored with both the Arthur Foote Award from the Harvard Musical Association and the Lotos Prize in the Arts from the Stecher and Horowitz Foundation.

The Attacca Quartet has engaged in extensive educational and community outreach projects, serving as guest artists and teaching fellows at the Lincoln Center Institute, the Boston University Tanglewood Institute, Vivace String Camp in New York, the Woodlands ChamberFest in Texas, Virginia Arts Festival, Bravo! Vail Valley and Animato Summer Music Camp at Florida International University in Miami. Since 2006, it has performed in yearly benefit concerts supporting the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation’s efforts. The members of the Attacca Quartet currently reside in New York City, and are represented by Polyarts.

About Claire Bryant

Camden native Claire Bryant enjoys an active and diverse career in New York City as a performer of chamber music, contemporary music, and the solo cello repertoire. She is equally passionate and committed to her work as an educator and advocate for the inclusion of the arts in society. A founding member of Decoda, Bryant has collaborated with world-class artists including Daniel Hope, Anthony Marwood, Emanuel Ax, Sir Simon Rattle, Dawn Upshaw, the Weilerstein Trio and members of the Saint Lawrence String Quartet, and Danish String Quartet, among others. She regularly performs with acclaimed ensembles in New York City such as Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, Novus NY, and Orchestra of St. Luke’s.

The 2010 recipient of the Robert Sherman McGraw Hill Companies award for excellence in community outreach and music education, Bryant is the director of Decoda’s criminal justice initiative, Music for Transformation, which brings songwriting workshops to correctional institutions. Decoda’s work in corrections was celebrated as part of President Obama’s White House with two invitations to perform and share their work. In recent seasons, Claire was a visiting professor at the University of Northern Iowa and a guest cellist in the Nightingale String Quartet in Copenhagen, Denmark. Last year, she was a member of the Canadian Cecilia String Quartet and was on faculty at the University of Toronto. She is a graduate of The Juilliard School and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, where her primary teachers were Bonnie Hampton and Joel Krosnick.