Event - Face the Music Concert Series

Face the Music Concert Series

12.06.15, 2:00 pm

Face the Music is the only youth ensemble in the country dedicated to the creation and performance of music by living composers. Join Face the Music’s Samurai Mama Big Band for an afternoon of modern jazz and world premieres. The set will begin with two small ensemble performances of works by Bill Frisell, Dennis Gonzalez, and Wayne Shorter. These pieces will highlight improvisation within a dynamic array of contemporary writing. Following the combos, the big band will take the stage to premiere Side Step, a piece by Ben Sperling that grounds punctuated brass and saxophone flurries with a solid back beat. The concert will conclude with the intersecting melodies and driving swing of Owen Carter’s Underground Oceans. It will be an afternoon of creative improvisation and new music.


The only youth ensemble in the U.S. dedicated to the creation and performance of music by living composers, the 200+ member Face the Music has taken its place as a full-fledged player in New York City’s vibrant contemporary classical scene, rapidly becoming what Allan Kozinn of the New York Times has called “a force in the New York new-music world.” In the space of ten years Face the Music has grown from an after-school club of eight kids to a massive group of over 135 students from all over the tri-state area who convene every week to write, rehearse, and perform music together. The ensemble advances Kaufman Music Center’s commitment to contemporary music and provides unparalleled performance and education experiences for the next generation of musical leaders.

Under the direction of Dr. Jenny Undercofler, Face the Music performs nearly 35 concerts each season in venues around the city ranging from schools to museums to concert halls. Highlights from recent seasons include performances at Lincoln Center Out of Doors, the Bang On A Can Marathon, the Ecstatic Music Festival, and the River to River Festival, where Face the Music opened for the Philip Glass Ensemble. Face the Music has collaborated with many professional artists, including the JACK Quartet, with whom they performed Steve Reich’s Triple Quartet at the Baryshnikov Arts Center last spring. Recently, Face the Music launched “Kronos at Kaufman,” a major collaboration with the Kronos Quartet for the 2013-14 season.