Saturday, November 21, 2009

Roaring 20's!!


Bloomingdale School of Music Concert Series presented Opus Nine in Roaring 20s in Paris. We were dressed in our best 20's regalia and ready to travel back in time.

Thank you to everyone who came out for the concert! It was such a success-and videos of the performances will launch online in January-so everyone can join in on the party.

In the meantime, check out these before and after concert pics here!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Chamber Music America Directory is OUT NOW!


Check us out in Chamber Music America's 2009/2010 Member Directory!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Richard's Birthday Week Kicks Off!

Richard, our resident baritone, kicked off his birthday celebration in NYC this weekend. Friends and those that love him gathered at Tillman's (hoping to spot a celebrity).

A beautiful 8-part Happy Birthday was sung and Richard even shared his strawberry shortcake. Richard will wrap up his celebration week at Road Trip USA-our Season Opener concert this Thursday, Sept. 24th @ 7PM. Tickets are available online, here or at the door.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Fractured Atlas Member of the Week!


We are the Fractured Atlas Featured Member of the Week! Fractured Atlas is a non-profit organization that serves a national community of artists and arts organizations. They "help artists and arts organizations function more effectively as businesses by providing access to funding, healthcare, education, and more, all in a context that honors their individuality and independent spirit." With a membership that includes more than 5,000 artists nationwide, Fractured Atlas is fostering a dynamic and diverse cultural landscape of tomorrow. Fractured Atlas Blog : Featured Member: Opus Nine Ensemble

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Make Music New York














Make Music New York (MMNY) is one of the largest music events in the city's history. Today, on the first day of summer, 850 free concerts were performed in parks and streets citywide. MMNY takes place simultaneously with similar festivals in more than 300 cities around the world-a global celebration of music making! Opus Nine was thrilled to be a part!

Opus Nine presented a one hour performance at the Divalicious Chocolate! Cafe in Little Italy. The owner, Jackie greeted us with some chocolate samples-the chocolate was delicious!!!











The lively program consisted of Poulenc, Beethoven, Tailleferre, and Mozart. Passersby and neighbors stopped to hear the music. We also had an excited little conductor-in-training in the crowd! This little pink diva could be the next Marin Alsop-she even had clear downbeats.

Check out these pics from the performance!



































Check out the entire album here!

--Alysia

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Tim Smith blogs about us!







The Baltimore Sun
music critic, Tim Smith blogged about us in his popular blog, Clef Notes.
"Opus Nine offers a good example of how music students and recent conservatory grads are making their own way...............Read the entire story here.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Make Music New York Festival Party

Jarvis and I went to the Make Music New York (MMNY) Festival Party tonight hosted by Brooklyn Brewery(in our Opus Nine regalia). Part fundraiser, part networking event and part party-we were asked to help MMNY … by drinking lots of beer. Along with about 100 MMNY supporters we enjoyed the warm atmosphere, great music, and an open bar with eight great beers on tap.

MMNY is a live, free musical celebration across the city that takes place each June 21—the longest day of the year. On that day, public space throughout the five boroughs—sidewalks, parks, community gardens, and more—become impromptu musical stages, dance floors, and social meeting points. Thousands of musicians, in every genre, perform for new audiences, who come out from under their headphones to hear unfamiliar groups risk-free. Everyone is invited to sing along and enjoy the first day of summer. Opus Nine is so excited to participate in this day long festival this summer!

I have a new band obsession- Bury Me A Lion. They played a 1-hour set full of passionate lyrics, rocking original tunes, AND they gave Jarvis and me a shout-out from the stage -they absolutely rock! I even got this groupie/stalker photo with the band!

The evening ended with a drinking song sing-a-long-a little pitchy after a 3-hour Open Bar!
We had a great time and supported a great cause. Thank you to MMNY and Time Out Magazine for providing this great opportunity for musicians in NYC!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Robin Interviews Alexis Schultz

Robin had the pleasure of interviewing Alexis Schultz for this interview. As a special treat for our Philadelphia concert-goers, Alexis will give a pre-concert talk on the evening of May 15th at 6PM!
Reservations suggested. For reservations, email OpusNineEnsemble@gmail.com.

The adage says: "The devil is in the details." Or, you may prefer "God is in the details." Either way, one of the most important elements to a great concert program is in its program notes. These musical entrees, when well-written, whet our appetites and make us eager to hear the performance to follow. Are thorough concert program notes the result of divine inspiration? Let's find out by consulting Opus Nine's program note writer, Alexis Schultz!

R: Hi, Alexis! Thank you for joining me for an interview. We understand that you are very busy! Alexis is a full-time doctoral candidate at The Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD. Is it true that you are the first violist selected in quite a while to pursue the coveted Doctor of Musical Arts degree (D.M.A.) from this highly-selective program?

A: I feel very fortunate to be one of two violists accepted the year that I applied. It definitely worked in my favor that I had obtained my M.M. [Master of Music degree] from Peabody -- I had a wonderful viola teacher and several Musicology teachers pulling for me.

R: Wow, that's impressive! No need for viola jokes here! :) Since I mentioned that you are a violist, let's expound upon that fact. How did the viola become your instrument of choice?

A: My father is a pianist, and I studied piano at a very young age. I was talented without working too hard at it, and honestly, I just didn't appreciate it. Along came my first orchestra director, giving all of the students a basic music test. Those who did well were taken to the school library, where three tables were set up. To the left, a violin, and to the right, a cello. The class divided almost exactly in half in the two directions. The viola just glowed on the table in the middle -- I had no choice. The viola chose me. So, I practiced tons and nothing came naturally. I had to work hard and fight for every little step. Maybe it was the challenge, but I grew to really appreciate music and the viola in a profound way.

R: Perhaps it is natural for we violists to walk to the beat of our own drum! You selected the viola when nobody else did! I agree that we often learn to appreciate real beauty in life and music when we persevere through trials. Clearly, you were quite an interesting child, Alexis. Tell us a little about your early academic experience. How and when did you decide to become a professional musician?

A: Again, I have to say, it never felt like a choice. It just was. As for academia ... it's hard to pinpoint when things fell into place. I was a book nerd as a kid and I'm a book nerd now. I blame my parents -- both big readers and knowledge-seekers. As I said, my dad is a musician -- he was my first piano teacher -- I distinctly remember being four years old, [sitting] on the piano bench and learning about Bach being from the Baroque era and how that differed from Mozart being from the Classical era, and Chopin being Romantic. In second grade I got in trouble for calling a classmate narcissistic. I was intolerable. In high school I was restless and signed up for an exchange program that would send me to Versailles. I had a great viola teacher there -- Paul Hadjage -- and I was changed. I started college thinking I might major in Musicology and minor in Viola, but my viola teacher -- Helen Callus -- would have none of it. So I signed on for a musicology-heavy performance degree, called a B.M./B.A., and took lots of history courses. I got to work with brilliant folks at UW in Seattle: Larry Starr, Joel Durand, John Rahn. I was hooked.

...continued

For Robin's full interview with Alexis Schultz, please click here.


Friday, April 24, 2009

FIRST Music Workshops are a success!

Today, Opus Nine completed our first educational outreach music workshops reaching 425 public school students at the First Philadelphia Charter School!

The artists boarded a 6AM train to Philly-excited about the day!
From Music in the Schools Day in Philly
Crystal, Mindy, Jarvis and special guest, Juliette Jones each led their own workshop on music fundamentals-asking the students to open their musical ears and stretch their imaginations.

Jarvis' workshop on dynamics allows students to explore varying dynamic levels with their ears, bodies, instruments and their voices. Watch a 2nd grader 'conduct' her class through 'Mary had a little lamb" from pianissimo to fortissimo.

The students were so great-so smart and creative. It was a pleasure to work with such awesome students and a really helpful faculty. The workshops received rave reviews for the the high energy of the artists and the great balance of fun and education in each workshop.

Kudos to all of our artists for a job INCREDIBLY well done!! Click here to see the entire album!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Prepping for our first Educational Outreach Workshop

Alysia, Crystal, Jarvis and Mindy got together tonight to prepare for the FIRST Opus Nine Educational Music Workshop. Under the watchful eye, of Oscar the cat-we put the final touches on our music fundamental workshop plans and materials. There was also time for some ice cream birthday cake to celebrate Mindy's birthday. How awesome is Mindy?? She is spending her birthday sharing music with public school students and Opus Nine. We are all so excited to share our high energy lessons with over 400 kids tomorrow in Philadelphia.
From Getting ready for Music in the Schools Day!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Crystal & Alysia's Brooklyn Adventure

Crystal and I headed to Brooklyn on a fundraising adventure today. And what adventure is complete without a good old cup of Joe and a chocolate muffin? We stopped at BACO Living, a nifty cafe/showroom in DUMBO for some fuel.We also saw some cool street art on the way! We learned tons today at the New York Foundation of the Arts about emerging arts organizations and heard lots of interesting ideas. Wanna see more pictures, click here.

From Crystal & Alysia's Brooklyn Adventure

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Times Square Photo Shoot

On Saturday members of Opus Nine met up in NYC to have some fun with a photo shoot!! I had a great time hanging out with the OPUS NINE posse.We mingled over a few drinks at a great bar called Bamboo 52.Then we trekked over to Times Square altogether. As always, Times Square was completely inundated with people! The shoot overall was very fun and exciting. Although it was extremely cold, everyone was smiling and having a great time. While we were there tourists started taking our picture and saying to each other “Who are they?!” (I guess we just looked that good!!) Take a look at the whole album for more behind the scenes shots!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Performance at the NYC LGBT Community Center

I traveled down to the LGBT center in The Village to hear Opus Nine violinist, Ross perform for the Music Salon and Tea crowd. Ross showcased an extremely polished performance of Ysaye’s Ballade (Violin Sonata No.
3)-which ended with the audience jolting to their feet! “BRAVO!!!”

Still amazed and moved by the performance, the audience immediately placed their names on the e-mail list and snatched up flyers for the Opus Nine Debut Concert Tour. Ross inspired and aroused so much interest for Opus Nine; all in a matter of 7 minutes. Job well done Ross!!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Opus Nine Brings its Charm to Charm City

Last month, Alysia and Jarvis appointed Richard and Robin to head up marketing efforts in the Baltimore/DC area. Richard and Robin ended their productive dinner meeting on Fri, March 13 with a toast and a solid handshake. With its goals outlined and a little over seven weeks before the Opus Nine Debut Concert Tour, Team Baltimore -- Richard, Robin, Miles and Taleesha -- is off to a great start! We are in constant communication with our co-founders, Alysia and Jarvis via text messages, emails, Facebook.com, and phone calls. Prior to our May 16 Baltimore debut concert, we hope to give several performances throughout the city. Thanks to Ms. Theresa Veatch at the Peabody Institute Elderhostel, Team Baltimore will perform a free recital for guests of the Elderhostel on the evening of May 7th. Keep checking our website and blog for weekly updates!

Robin, viola

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Marketing Team NYC Meeeting

Ross,violin and his partner, Jim hosted the first OPUS NINE NYC Marketing Planning Meeting & Dinner in their lovely home.

Jarvis
and I headed uptown with empty bellies-we were treated to an amazing dinner of beef short ribs, mashed potatoes, and sprouts ( my favorite veggie) and wine, wine, and more wine. Oh.....how can I forget the crab dip? Marvy!

We planned some exciting strategies for OPUS NINE-wait until you see what we have in store for NYC! We even purchased our domain name tonight-OPUSNINE.ORG.

We had amazing food and even better company!!!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Opus 9 Performs March 29!


Sunday, March 29 @ 3-5PM
LGBT Center
208 W. 13th Street, NYC

Experience the Pulse of Spring! Turn the beat around with improvised drumming, singing and strumming at the Salon & Tea. Featuring cello divas, Ilya & Andre, and a featured performance by members of OPUS NINE, the music salon introduces audiences at the Center to classical music and new friends while feasting on Russian chocolates. $15 www.xanga.com/musicsalon

Monday, March 2, 2009

Be a friend to Opus 9!


Click here to become a fan of Opus 9 on Facebook!


Add Opus 9 as your friend on MySpace!
http://www.myspace.com/opus9ensemble

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

New Audition Day Added!

Due to an overwhelming response, we have added another day of auditions-Tuesday, February 24th. If you are interested in being heard, please forward your resume and headshot to ChamberMusicEnsemble@gmail.com.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Announcing Opus9 Ensemble Auditions!!

New Chamber Music Ensemble Openings!!

An energetic group of instrumentalists and singers are forming a new chamber music ensemble to play chamber music of the the Romantic and Modern periods. The ensemble will include violin, viola, cello, clarinet, flute, a quartet of singers, and piano.

Plans for ensemble include four (4) annual NYC concerts, select regional concerts, auditioning for festivals and other unique performance opportunities. The ensemble will play repertoire that utilizes any pairing of the musicians on the roster, i.e. duets, trios, quartets, etc. Therefore participation in every concert is not necessary.

We are seeking dedicated members that are high level players with great musical imaginations and a passion for chamber music. East Coast debut concerts are scheduled for Spring 2009. Interested musicians should submit a head shot (jpg) and resume (PDF preferred) for audition consideration to ChamberMusicEnsemble@gmail.com. Currently we are accepting applications for the following instruments: cello, clarinet, flute, tenor, and violin. First round of auditions will be Tuesday, Feb. 17th from 5pm-7pm.

Please see audition excerpts below.

Cello:
  1. A movement of a Concerto from the Standard Repertoire

  2. 2 contrasting movements of a Bach Cello Suite

  3. Brahms Piano Quartet in C minor III mv.(ms. 1 –17)


Clarinet:

  1. A movement of Brahms Sonata in E-flat major or F minor

  2. Brahms Clarinet Quintet in B minor

    • 1st mvt. (ms. 5-15)

3. 2-3 Minutes of a concerto from the standard repertoire

Flute:

1. Exposition of Concerto in G or D major- Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

2. Prélude a l’après-midi d‘un faune- Claude Debussy

-m. 1-4

-m. 11-14

3. Flute Quartet in D major Mvt. I - Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

-m. 1-12

-m. 26-43

Tenor:

1. Two arias from operas or oratorios

2. Two art songs

Please prepare contrasting selections with at least 3 languages represented.


Viola:

1. First Movement of Bartok, Hindemith, or Walton Concerto

2. 2 Contrasting movements of Bach Cello Suites

3. Roman Carnival Overture (Viola Soli) - Hector Berlioz


Violin:

  1. A movement of a Concerto from the Romantic Period or 20th Century

  2. A movement of an unaccompanied Sonata or Partita

  3. Brahms Piano Quartet in C minor Mvt. III (ms. 17-27)