The viol quartet PARTHENIA brings early music into the present with its repertoire that animates ancient and fresh-commissioned contemporary works with a ravishing sound and a remarkable sense of ensemble. These “local early-music stars,” hailed by The New Yorker and music critics throughout the world, are “one of the brightest lights in New York’s early-music scene.” Parthenia is presented in concerts across America, and produces its own series in New York City, collaborating regularly with the world’s foremost early music specialists. The quartet has been featured in prestigious festivals and series as wide-ranging as Music Before 1800, the Harriman-Jewell Series, Maverick Concerts, the Regensburg Tage Alter Musik, the Shalin Lui Performing Arts Center, the Pierpont Morgan Library, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Yale Center for British Art, Columbia University’s Miller Theatre, and the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. Parthenia’s performances range from its popular touring program, When Music & Sweet Poetry Agree, a celebration of Elizabethan poetry and music with actor Paul Hecht, to the complete viol fantasies of Henry Purcell, as well as the complete instrumental works of Robert Parsons, and commissions and premieres of new works annually. Parthenia has recorded As it Fell on a Holie Eve - Music for an Elizabethan Christmas, with soprano Julianne Baird, Les Amours de Mai, with Ms. Baird and violinist Robert Mealy, A Reliquary for William Blake, Within the Labyrinth, and The Flaming Fire, with vocalist Ryland Angel and keyboard player Dongsok Shin. Parthenia’s newest CD release, in December 2017, features four works by three living women composers: Kristin Norderval, Frances White, and Tawnie Olson, with performances by Parthenia, Kristin Norderval, soprano, and Dashon Burton, bass-baritone, and actor Valeria Vasilevsky.
Parthenia records for MSR Classics and is represented by GEMS Live Artist Management.
For the past 10 years, Parthenia Viol Consort has commissioned and premiered brilliant new works for viol consort. And we have performed these works again and again on our own concert series and in festivals. We selected four compositions to put on our newest CD, and we know you’ll love them as much as we do.
Below you can listen to live performances of a couple of pieces on the CD. But first, meet the composers and performers: Kristin Norderval is a soprano and composer and performance artist. Nothing Proved Can Be is based on writings of Queen Elizabeth I, composed for viol quartet, soprano and electronic sound. Tawnie Olson wrote Thorns specifically for Dashon Burton and Parthenia, using as text a poem by John Hare on the passion of Christ. Frances White has been writing for Parthenia since 2010; her two pieces on the CD much loved and much performed by the ensemble. From a fairy tale uses an original tale by James Pritchett as its launching point, composed for acoustic viols. A flower on the farther side was written for viol quartet and electronic sound. In both White’s and Norderval’s works, the electronic sound source is the viols’ own natural voices, recorded and manipulated by the composers.
"Nothing Proved" is Parthenia's fifth CD with MSR Classics. Visit their website to see our full discography: http://www.msrcd.com.
The New Yorker’s Alex Ross calls Kristin Norderval’s Nothing Proved Can Be “ an opera in the making.” "Fortune" is performed here by Parthenia and Norderval, April 2013.
Dashon Burton and Parthenia perform Tawnie Olson’s Thorns in October 2016.
Parthenia is immensely grateful for the grants we received from the Aaron Copland Fund for Music, the Norwegian Composers Society, New York Women Composers, and for the generosity of so many individual supporters (see list below). The $17,000 we raised over the past two years enabled us to pay for recording, editing and mastering the disc, for designing the beautiful booklet, and for printing the CDs, which just arrived, a few days before Christmas 2017.
This leaves us with a mere $4,000 that we need to raise to be able to pay for artists fees, travel and per diem for the recording sessions, and then there is the post production costs: marketing, advertising and promotion. (See Updates Section below!***)
You can help! Any amount you give is hugely appreciated.
Ros, Larry, Lisa and Beverly
*** UPDATES ***
12/22/17: Donors have sent in $845 since Wednesday! Remaing total to raise is $3155
12/27/17: Our total raised since 12/20 is $2105 - we thank the donors below who have stepped up at this time to fully fund "Nothing Proved" CD! Remaining goal: $1895.
12/28/17: Thanks to your generosity, Parthenia has raised $2861 since 12/20/17 - we need only $1139 to pay ALL our bills for this CD project.
12/29/17: We only have $989 left to go to make this CD project marked P A I D! Over $3K raised so far from our fabulous, generous supporters.
12/31/17: Wow! Only $240 left to go as of tonight, and we expect more checks in the mail from end of year donors this week, so we think we'll go over the top! Thank you donors, you are so wonderful!
1/4/18: OVER THE TOP!! We raised over $6000 since December 20th, you folks are tremendous! We are so grateful, and happy to be able to buy the ads our record company suggests, in addition to paying artists for their time. Thank you.
Ros,Beverly, Larry and Lisa
Tony Elitcher and Andie Taras
Julie and Richard Fischer
Stacey McG. Gemmill
Hans and Gloria Gesell
David Glaser and Linda Plotkin
Lorraine and William Graves
Jane McKinley and Gooitzen van der Wal
Carol and Dan Muss
Deborah Peters and Stephen Bloch
Paul and Faina Ross
Lucy and Irving Sandler
Liz and Neil Seely
Cynthia Shaw and David Simonoff
Billie Tannen and Bob Nielsen
Carol and Bill Teltser