April 23: Invoke Presented by The Phillips Collection Performing Original Music
Invoke Presented by The Phillips Collection Performing Original Music
Plus Enigma for the Night by Jocelyn C. Chambers and The Lessons of History by Jonathan Bingham
Photo of Invoke by Nathan Russell. Available in hi-resolution at: www.jensenartists.com/invoke
Sunday, April 23, 2023 at 4pm The Phillips Collection Music Room 1600 21st Street, NW | Washington, DC
In-Person Tickets are Sold Out Virtual: $15 (General) | $10 (Members)
More information: www.phillipscollection.org/event/2023-04-23-invoke
“The special thing about Invoke is…how its lively spirit and playfulness are essential to the way they approach every piece of music.” – Austin Chronicle www.InvokeSound.com
Washington DC – On Sunday, April 23, 2023, Austin-based, multi-instrumental quartet Invoke (Nick Montopoli, violin/banjo/vocals; Zach Matteson, violin/vocals; Karl Mitze, viola/mandolin/vocals; Geoff Manyin, cello/vocals) –– a group the Austin Chronicle says “infuse[s] their performances with such a down-home joyfulness” –– will be presented by The Phillips Collection as part of The Phillips Collection’s Sunday Concerts. Invoke will perform selections of their original music, in addition to Jocelyn C. Chambers’s Enigma for the Night and The Lessons of History by Jonathan Bingham. The concert will be held in The Phillips Collection Music Room (1600 21st Street, NW).
Driven by a passion for storytelling, Invoke’s performances feature original works composed by and for the group, which form a unique contemporary repertoire inspired by many different musical styles –– from minimalism, to jazz, to American fiddle tunes, and bluegrass. This appreciation for different genres and collaborations can be seen through Invoke’s performance history, which includes sharing stages with some of the most acclaimed chamber groups in the country: the Westerlies, Miró and Ensō Quartets, and the U.S. Army Field Band, as well as chamber rock group San Fermin, indie group Never Shout Never, and DC beatboxer/rapper/spoons virtuoso Christylez Bacon. Iconic spaces from where Invoke has performed include Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall, Lincoln Center, and the Green Music Center, among others.
Invoke says of their selections for this performance:
"We're very excited to be presenting works off of our upcoming album, 'Evolve and Travel,' which is a collection of pieces written around the initial year-long hiatus all artists took during the COVID-19 lockdown. Some works are inspired by books we finally had time to read ("Syl," "Alchemy," "Doorway"), others are more grounded in the realities of being unable to participate in your chosen profession like ("Prohibition Song"), and some were written more recently, in a response to finally being able to reconnect with our audiences around the country ("Evolve and Travel"). We're very honored to have been able to come out the other side of the 2020/2021 still together and able to perform so this album is our way of showing appreciation to all those who helped us along the way."
Of her piece Enigma for the Night, written when she was just 16 years old, Jocelyn Chambers explains, “It's really vulnerable and breathy and reminds me [of] car rides home with granddaddy after music school let out for the day. [It’s] one of my more personal pieces.“ Jonathan Bingham’s The Lessons of History was commissioned by Invoke in 2019 as part of their ongoing project, “American Postcards.” Bingham, like several other U.S. composers, was asked by Invoke to write a work reflecting upon a time and place in U.S. history that holds special meaning to them.
About Invoke: Described as “...not classical but not, not classical…beautiful, adventurous, American and immediately engaging” (David Srebnik, former SiriusXM Classical Producer), Invoke (Nick Montopoli, violin/banjo/vocals; Zach Matteson, violin/vocals; Karl Mitze, viola/mandolin/vocals; Geoff Manyin, cello/vocals) strives to successfully dodge even the most valiant attempts at genre classification. The multi-instrumental quartet encompasses traditions from across America, including bluegrass, Appalachian fiddle tunes, jazz, and minimalism. Fueled by their passion for storytelling, Invoke weaves all of these styles together to form a unique contemporary repertoire, featuring original works composed by and for the group.
Invoke was selected to be the Young Professional String Quartet in Residence at the University of Texas at Austin from 2016-2018. The group also participated in the Emerging String Quartet Program at Stanford, and was selected as an Artist in Residence at Strathmore, the Emerging Young Artist Quartet at Interlochen, and the Fellowship String Quartet at Wintergreen Performing Arts. In 2018, Invoke was named a winner of the Concert Artists Guild Victor Elmaleh Competition in New York, NY, received First Prize at the M-Prize International Chamber Arts competition in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and received First Prize in the Coltman Competition in Austin, Texas.
Invoke has shared the stage with some of the most acclaimed chamber groups in the country, including the Westerlies, Miró and Ensō Quartets, and the U.S. Army Field Band. Additional performance highlights include Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall, Lincoln Center, and the Green Music Center, a concerto appearance with the Brevard Sinfonia, a residency at the Stanford Pre-Collegiate Institute, and performances on the NextNOW Festival at University of Maryland and Festival Amadeus in Montana. Invoke has also appeared with musicians from various genres, including chamber rock group San Fermin, indie group Never Shout Never, and DC beatboxer/rapper/spoons virtuoso Christylez Bacon.
Invoke’s discography includes their debut album, Souls in the Mud (2015), featuring works by composer Danny Clay as well as original works composed by the group; Furious Creek (2018), featuring original compositions and arrangements; and Fantastic Planet (2021), an original soundtrack composed by the group inspired by the 1973 French animated feature. Fantastic Planet is a companion album to their summer 2019 commission by the Austin Chamber Music Festival. The album features Invoke’s standard instrumentation as well as the addition of the electric cello and the igil, a horsehead fiddle from Tuva, Siberia.
Invoke is strongly committed to championing diverse American voices through commissioning and highlighting new music. Invoke’s ongoing commissioning project, entitled American Postcards, asks composers to pick a time and place in American history and tell its story through the group’s unique artistry. They have commissioned eight new works since 2017, including the latest addition to the initiative, The Lessons of History, by Jonathan Bingham, which premiered in summer 2021.
In addition to American Postcards, Invoke has performed and recorded numerous world premieres, including works by Joseph C. Phillips Jr., Armando Bayolo, and Geoff Sheil. The group’s recording credits appear on bassist/composer Ethan Foote’s solo album Fields Burning, singer/songwriter Marian McLaughlin’s Spirit House, jazz/soul singer Rochelle Rice’s EP Wonder, and many more.
About The Phillips Collection: The Phillips Collection, America’s first museum of modern art, was founded in 1921. The museum houses one of the world’s most celebrated Impressionist and American modern art collections and continues to grow its collection with important contemporary voices. Its distinctive building combines extensive new galleries with the former home of its founder, Duncan Phillips. The Phillips’s impact spreads nationally and internationally through its diverse and experimental special exhibitions and events, including its award-winning education programs for educators, students, and adults; renowned Phillips Music series; and dynamic art and wellness and Phillips after 5 events. The museum contributes to global dialogues with events like Conversations with Artists and Artists of Conscience. The Phillips Collection values its community partnership with THEARC—the museum’s satellite campus in Southeast DC. The Phillips Collection is a private, non-government museum, supported primarily by donations.
# # #