(standing L to R) Daniel Eastwood, Alexis Lamb, Gregory Beyer
(seated L to R) Raychel Taylor, Kyle Flens, Ethan Martin
Projeto Arcomusical is a world music sextet reimagining the Afro-Brazilian berimbau through a repertoire of unique, powerful, original concert chamber music. Projeto Arcomusical formed in 2013 specifically to interpret MeiaMeia, the collaborative composition cycle co-composed by ensemble members Gregory Beyer and Alexis C. Lamb. Arcomusical released MeiaMeia in October 2016 on Innova Recordings.
The ensemble has introduced its original music making to audiences around the United States in Washington, Kansas, Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and New York. It has a myriad performances to its credit, including the Percussive Arts Society International Convention, universities, theaters and similar performance venues. The ensemble has performance credits in Brazil at festivals of contemporary music and schools of capoeira Angola.
Arcomusical is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with a mission to spread the joy of the Afro-Brazilian berimbau musical bow through the development of excellent repertoire in diverse musical settings. Arcomusical supports this mission through six pillars of activity: performance, education, composition, publication, research, and community.
What is a musical bow?
Although the berimbau is a well-known instrument in Brazil, most people in the United States are not familiar with its elegant beauty and simplicity. And people remain largely unaware of the diverse family of instruments to which the berimbau belongs. Musical bows are the most popular and widespread traditional string instrument found throughout sub-saharan Africa, and the berimbau made its way to Brazil via the transatlantic slave trade. The berimbau’s closest relatives are found in southern Africa, and specifically in the Portuguese speaking countries of Angola and Mozambique.
In the Arcomusical mission resonate the words of the great civil rights pioneer Asa Philip Randolph:“Maybe our forefathers and mothers all came to this great land in different ships, but we are all in the same boat now. We all live in the same house. The American house.” Musical bows come from around the world, and their musical transformation is happening in the unique cultural crucible of the United States. For Arcomusical, this is American music.
ARCOMUSICAL: Organizational Mission Video 2017
Projeto Arcomusical is a world music sextet reimagining the Afro-Brazilian berimbau. This video features clips from 2017 performances and residencies at the following institutions and venues (in order of appearance):
Cornish College of the Arts (Seattle, WA)*
Kansas State University (Manhattan, KS)
Western Washington University (Bellingham, WA)
Lakeside Arts Park at the Dole Mansion (Crystal Lake, IL)
* It was an honor to have the participation of Mestre Silvinho Aleixo and the capoeira Angola organization, FICA-Seattle, at Cornish.
ARCOMUSICAL: “Roda” (2017) by Elliot Cole, mvt. 3
“Spinning” is movement three of Elliot Cole’s “Roda,” written for and performed by Arcomusical (from L to R): Daniel Eastwood, Raychel Taylor, Kyle Flens, Alexis Lamb, Ethan Martin, and Gregory Beyer. Recorded December 3, 2017, DeKalb, IL. The creation of “Roda” was supported by generous support from Chamber Music America through its Classical Commissioning Program.
ARCOMUSICAL: “Berimbau Sextet no 1, “kora” (2015) by Gregory Beyer
“Kora” is Gregory Beyer’s sextet composition for the MeiaMeia Arcomusical composition cycle, here performed by Arcomusical (L to R): Daniel Eastwood, Raychel Taylor, Kyle Flens, Alexis Lamb, Ethan Martin, Gregory Beyer. Recorded December 3, 2017, DeKalb, IL. Arcomusical released MeiaMeia in October 2016 on Innova Recordings.