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Treetops Chamber Music Society

Stamford, CT   

Treetops Chamber Music Society (TCMS) is the premier chamber music organization in South Eastern Connecticut. Its main concert series takes place at the former art studio of American abstract artist Louis Schanker. Since its founding in 2006, TCMS has presented a stellar roster of international artists, among them the American, Cassatt, Daedalus, Escher and Shanghai Quartets, the New York Woodwind Quintet, and artists from the MET Orchestra. Since 2008, TCMS has also helped nurture some of the most talented young chamber musicians in the country through its J.C. Arriaga Chamber Music Competition and has commissioned new chamber music works by celebrated and up-and-coming composers. TCMS showcases contemporary art, with rotating exhibitions held at each concert.

All TCMS concerts provide a unique opportunity for the community to hear world-class artists in an intimate setting and to interact with the artists at the receptions following the concerts. The educational experience is furthered by the diversity of the programs, by quality program notes and by commentary from the artists and the artistic director. 


In 2014 TCMS partnered with Franklin Street Works (FSW) to launch a new music concert series in an art-gallery-and-café setting in downtown Stamford: the Listening Room. This new project hits the core mission of both TCMS and FSW: to promote young artists and to provide an ideal setting where today’s artists and audiences communicate freely. 


Every spring some of the most talented young artists in the country come to Stamford to take part in the finals of the Arriaga Chamber Music Competition, a Treetops CMS program. Then, in October, the winners return to Stamford to perform at Treetops CMS. Starting in 2015, Treetops CMS will bring the positive energy and impressive talent of these young artists, the Arriaga Winners, to mentor underserved youth in workshop settings and performing age-appropriate concerts at community centers in Stamford, including Domus, Chester Addison Community Center, the Waterside School and Project Music. Through this program, the Arriaga Winners will share their career and life experiences, with the underlying premise that the skills necessary to excel in chamber music are the same set of skills needed to excel in real life: effective team work and collaboration, excellent listening skills, excellent communication skills, discipline, resilience, curiosity, eagerness to follow one’s passion, an entrepreneurial spirit… The goal being to help hundreds of children and teens reach their own “eureka” moment and realize how they can succeed in life applying similar approaches.

Co-founder and Artistic Director Oskar Espina Ruiz has headed TCMS since it was founded in 2006.

Hommage à R. Sch., Op. 15d (excerpt)

Composer: György Kurtág (b. 1926).
Composed: 1990.
Performers and instrumentation: Espina-Browne-Shteinberg Trio (Oskar Espina Ruiz, clarinet; Sheila Browne, viola; Dmitri Shteinberg, piano).
Presented in concert at Treetops CMS in 2013.

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YET (excerpt from mvt. II: Redemption)

Composer: Pascal Gaigne (b. 1958).
Composed: 2011.
Performers and instrumentation: Oskar Espina Ruiz, clarinet; Daedalus String Quartet.
Composer Pascal Gaigne’s “YET” was commissioned and premiered by Treetops CMS in 2011.

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