Launched in 2007, ETHEL’s TruckStop® explores, unites, and honors indigenous communities, cultures, and music. TruckStop® takes ETHEL on the road and around the globe to create innovative new work through rich collaborations with established and emerging artists from diverse genres, traditions, and geographic regions by means of community-driven residencies and locally hosted performances. Explore the power of music as a common language through this one-of-a-kind project and become the next TruckStop®.
ETHEL’s Foundation has developed a robust commissioning program for mid-career and established composers, which in ten years has generated more than 40 new works from diverse voices including Phil Kline, Julia Wolfe, and Neil Rolnick.
The Foundation also commissions innovative emerging composers, and to that end, we recently launched ETHEL’s HomeBaked to commission younger artists who live and work in ETHEL’s hometown of New York City. ETHEL’s HomeBaked captures new and distinct flavors in the quartet’s own artistic research kitchen. Commissioned artists to date include Andy Akiho, Anna Clyne, Hannis Brown, Lainie Fefferman, Dan Friel, Matt Marks, Ulysses Owens Jr., and Judd Greenstein.
Native American Composers Apprentice Project (NACAP). Since 2005, ETHEL has been quartet-in-residence at NACAP, a project of the Grand Canyon Music Festival. Every September, ETHEL tours schools on Navajo and Hopi reservations in the Four Corners region to work with young Native American composers. Some 25 students compose their own string quartets. ETHEL coaches the young artists, rehearsing and polishing their pieces which are performed at schools and youth centers, with a culminating concert at Grand Canyon National Park. The body of NACAP work now totals more than 250 compositions. ETHEL has performed NACAP music in Germany, Mexico, Holland, Australia, and all across the United States. Additionally, NACAP pieces feature prominently in ETHEL’s other educational residencies. Young musicians from Chicago, IL to Hobart, Tasmania have studied and performed the music of these gifted young Native Americans.
Residency Program for Young Native American Composers: Modeled after the Grand Canyon Music Festival’s Native American Composers Apprentice Project (NACAP, see above) this program offers young Native American composers throughout North America the opportunity to further develop their musical voices through the process of writing music for the string quartet. ETHEL guides each young artist through the entire compositional practice, from harmonic outline and thematic development, to score editing and rehearsal techniques. Special emphasis is devoted to notation, publication and recording considerations. Premiere performances of student compositions are professionally recorded, and each program participant receives a printed score and parts of their piece(s).
* Affordable residency activities: The Foundation helps to support a range of residency activities to inspire and encourage younger musicians. These programs include lectures, workshops, performances and master classes at colleges, music schools and universities. Topics include improvisation, composition, and collaboration.