We are thrilled to announce that Avaloch is trying out a new collaboration this summer with the New England Conservatory!
Heath Marlow, chair of NEC’s Center for Professional Development & Performing Arts Leadership, and I are pleased to be able to offer a special opportunity for interested ensembles applying to Avaloch this winter. If selected, it is now possible to combine a retreat at Avaloch with five days of residency building work with Heath at NEC in nearby Boston.
This is a unique opportunity for ensembles seeking to build a long-term or annual residency in a specific community to participate in an intensive residency design and planning experience. Through a competitive application process, we expect that two or three ensembles will be eligible for the opportunity to spend five days working with Heath at NEC, developing their ideas in a supportive environment of like-minded peers, and then spend some time at Avaloch to continue the process.
In the fall, Heath approached Avaloch with this idea because he is excited about the opportunity to support the creation of residencies that benefit both communities and musicians. With Heath’s guidance, ensembles will be able to define and build a plan for an initiative or organization that provides a sustainable balance of performing, engagement, and administrative activities—all geared to meet the needs of professional chamber musicians.
There are many examples of ensembles building long-term relationships with communities. There’s the Kronos Quartet’s organization with a staff of 15 in San Francisco (http://kronosquartet.org/about/organization), and there’s the Newport String Quartet’s organization (http://www.newportstringproject.org), still in the start-up phase in Newport, RI. There’s the Apple Hill String Quartet in New Hampshire (http://applehill.org/about-us/apple-hill-string-quartet/) and Eighth Blackbird’s Blackbird Creative Lab (https://www.blackbirdcreativelab.org) in Ojai, CA.
Heath promises that participating ensembles will come away with an understanding of best practices in residency building and a strategic plan for building their own residency, having worked through the necessary conceptual and logistical elements. If eligible, ensembles will be well prepared to apply to Chamber Music America’s Residency Partnership Program.
We are looking for two or three ensembles committed to meaningful and long-term engagement with a community. Do you know an ensemble that is a great fit for this unique opportunity? Please share this information with them. Please note that while a retreat at Avaloch Farm is provided tuition-free, this opportunity provided by NEC does not take place at Avaloch, nor is it free. You can learn more on the Applications Guidelines page of this website.