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Akropolis Reed Quintet

Detroit, MI            

Hailed by Fanfare Magazine for their “imagination, infallible musicality, and huge vitality,” the Akropolis Reed Quintet was founded in 2009 at the University of Michigan and has won seven national chamber music prizes since 2011, including the Fischoff Gold Medal, Fischoff Educator Award, Plowman Grand Prize, and MTNA Grand Prize. Akropolis has received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, New Music USA, Chamber Music America, Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs, CultureSource, Paul M. Angell Family Foundation, Aaron Copland Fund for Music, Alice M. Ditson Fund, Amphion Foundation, High Wire Lab, and more.

Akropolis delivers over 120 annual performances including ticketed recitals, K-12 outreach, and community residency activities. Celebrating their 10th anniversary, Akropolis’ 2019-20 season features 10 commissions for the ensemble including Storm Warning, the first concerto for reed quintet and wind band by Roshanne Etezady; CANE, by Jenni Brandon with guest bassoonist Monica Ellis of Imani Winds; Homage to Paradise Valley by Jeff Scott with support from the Chamber Music America Classical Commissioning Fund, celebrating the history of Detroit’s displaced Black Bottom neighborhood; and Sprocket, a work for reed quintet and rideable percussion bicycle by Steven Snowden. Akropolis will also co-produce a 10-show staged production with BodyVox Dance in Portland, Oregon.

Akropolis has given collaborative concerts with David Shifrin, Jennifer Frautschi, the Dover Quartet, BodyVox Dance, YAK, New Music Detroit, HarperCollins-published author and scientist, Vic Strecher, Arabic language poets Abdulrahman Alhumairy and Saeed AlMehrzi, and others.

The San Francisco Chronicle dubbed Akropolis’ recent third album release, The Space Between Us, “pure gold.” Akropolis’ discography has been aired around the United States including WNYC New Sounds, WQXR, and WRCJ Detroit. They have given live performances on WFMT Chicago, Performance Today, and more. Akropolis’ upcoming fourth album release will feature guest soprano Shara Nova as well as music composed for Akropolis by 2018 Pulitzer Prize finalist, Michael Gilbertson, and 2019 American Academy of Arts and Letters Music Award winner, Stacy Garrop.

Akropolis has premiered more than 70 new works and was selected to adjudicate and premiere the 2018 Barlow Prize funded by the Barlow Endowment, the first time the prize was given for a reed quintet work. Akropolis’ members are the first of any reed quintet to judge major chamber music competitions including the Fischoff Junior (2018) and Chamber Music Yellow Springs (2019) competitions.

Each June in Detroit, Akropolis presents its own 16-event festival, Together We Sound, featuring multidisciplinary collaborators, a workplace concert series, and educational outreach, expanding and diversifying arts access throughout the city. Akropolis’ members teach music business courses at the University of Michigan and Michigan State University, and they have given hundreds of “Akropolis WORKS” workshops to university musicians around the United States. Akropolis also reaches more than 5,000 K-12 students annually, including a school year-long residency with students at three Detroit high schools.

Akropolis is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization generously supported by individuals nationwide. Akropolis remains its founding members: Tim Gocklin (oboe), Kari Landry (clarinet), Matt Landry (saxophone), Andrew Koeppe (bass clarinet), and Ryan Reynolds (bassoon).

“Splinter” by Marc Mellits

The 11th edition of our Web Premiere series, Splinter was composed in 2014 and is one of the more versatile works in our repertoire, combining high-powered rhythmic drive with moments of stillness and beauty.

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“Rites for the Afterlife” (2018) by Stacy Garrop

This is the world premiere performance of Rites for the Afterlife, composed by Stacy Garrop, 2019 American Academy of Arts and Letters award recipient.

The work has 4 movements:
1. Inscriptions from the Book of the Dead (0:00)
2. Passage through the Netherworld (5:49)
3. The Hall of Judgement (11:47)
4. The Field of Reeds (15:04)

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Akropolis with BodyVox Dance – Robbie McCarthy’s Four-Letter-Word

Akropolis teams up with BodyVox in Portland, OR to perform Robbie McCarthy’s original reed quintet work, Four-Letter-Word with choreography. Cue the beginning, then cue 5:40 to see Akropolis interact with dancers. At 9:00 the dancers and musicians begin their final battle against one another to the conclusion of the work.

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