Grand Band

Grand Band

features six of New York City’s top pianists: Vicky Chow, David Friend, Paul Kerekes, Blair McMillen, Lisa Moore and Isabelle O’Connell. The ensemble has been described by The New York Times as “a kind of new-music supergroup” and “the Traveling Wilburys of the city’s new-music piano scene”. Labelled “awesome” by Sequenza 21 and ‘inventive’ in New York Magazine, this stunning collection of performers creates a powerful sonic force. A modern and unconventional troupe, Grand Band champions new music, living composers and arrangements of 19th and 20th Century classics. Their recent commissions include new works by composers Michael Gordon, Paul Kerekes, Missy Mazzoli, and Ben Wallace. Grand Band repertoire also includes original works by David Lang, Philip Glass, John Metcalf, Kate Moore, Steve Reich, Kevin Volans and Julia Wolfe as well as emerging UK composers Nathan Dearden, William Marsey, David Roche and Lucy McPhee. In 2017 Grand Band added arrangements of popular classics to their repertoire – works by Modeste Mussorgsky (Pictures at an Exhibition), Gustav Holst (The Planets) and Leonard Bernstein (West-Side Story Symphonic Dance Suite). Broadcast regularly on New York’s WQXR’s Q2 radio, Grand Band has performed at the Bang on a Can Marathon, (le) poisson rouge, Gilmore International Keyboard Festival, Detroit Institute of the Arts, Lansdale Community Concerts (PA), Rite of Summer Festival (NY) and in the UK in Sheffield, Liverpool and the Vale of Glamorgan Festival in Cardiff, Wales.

“It is an audacious, irresistible idea to have that many pianos onstage at one time… I had never before contemplated New York culture’s decided lack of supergroups. Grand Band is verily — and I don’t say this lightly — the Traveling Wilburys of the city’s new-music piano scene.” — Zachary Woolfe, The New York Times

REVIEWS
“Such a range of sonorities, such a magnificent din… The Band…made their instruments growl, crash, whisper, and sing, sometimes creating the music of the spheres, ethereal and beautiful… a miracle of ensemble coordination and sonic delight.”

–Zaide Pixley, Kalamazoo Gazette

“When people refer to piano quartets or piano trios, they generally mean a piano and some other stuff — a violin and a cello, say. But the new ensemble Grand Band is a piano sextet in the purest sense: six pianos, and only six pianos. It is an audacious, irresistible idea to have that many pianos onstage at one time. So it’s just icing on the cake when the musicians are as individually accomplished as Vicky Chow, David Friend, Paul Kerekes, Blair McMillen, Lisa Moore and Isabelle O’Connell, who formed Grand Band a few months ago and performed for the first time as a group in June as part of the Bang on a Can Marathon. I had never before contemplated New York culture’s decided lack of supergroups, but Grand Band is verily — and I don’t say this lightly — the Traveling Wilburys of the city’s new-music piano scene.”

–Zachary Woolfe, The New York Times

“Last night at the Poisson Rouge, all-star six-piano ensemble Grand Band paid homage to this maverick with a lushly starlit, seamlessly rippling performance of ten Holt’s best-known work, Canto Ostinato…There was a great deal of interplay involved, lots of friendly nods and “take it away” moments between David Friend, Vicky Chow, Paul Kerekes, Blair McMillen, Lisa Moore, and Isabelle O’Connell…..As the piece wound its way out, the individual players’ precision and perfect, Bach-like tempo never wavered…. A performance this good deserves an encore: let’s hope this fascinating and unique band gets the chance to stage it again.”

–Gordon Grdina, Lucid Culture

“I saw Ostinato performed live recently at the bar/venue (le) poisson rouge in NYC’s West Village. The performing ensemble, Grand Band, debuted last summer at the Bang on a Can Marathon and is a veritable powerhouse featuring some of NYC’s finest avant-garde keyboardists.”

–Meg Wilhoite, Bachtrack

“Piano sextet supergroup” — Ariel Artists