MOBY DICK: Extracts on Death and Other Curiosities
an oratorio (2014)

W4 and Contemporaneous joined forces with the MATA Festival Interval Series to create an evening-length oratorio inspired by Herman Melville's classic Moby- Dick. With a libretto using only text from the book itself, the composers of W4 - Matt Frey, Molly Herron, Tim Hansen and Ruben Naeff - pieced together an interpretation of the story that focuses on Melville's literary themes outside of the context of a linear narrative. Each composer took on contrasting sections, their compositions collectively exploring the story of both the danger and determination inherent in pursuing one all-consuming quest. Contemporaneous was conducted by David Bloom. New York-based visual artist Andy Cahill created visual art, with projections taking inspiration from visual representations of the drawings Rockwell Kent created for the 1930 Modern Library publication of Moby Dick. 

See our media page for excerpts.

End of Summer III (2013)

You know the drill: four sets, no genres, cold drinks, warm food, come and go as you wish! The third iteration of our annual event featured intrepid percussion trio Tigue presenting brand new material; Swiss songwriter oMoO with sampler and music box; the noise-synth-punk band Scherzo lauding cheap beer and a good party; and four new world premieres by the End of Summer Strings. Featured musicians and composers included: Maya Bennardo, Noah Berman, Nick Brooks, Matt Evans, Matt Frey, Amy Garapic, Ben Guo, Molly Herron, Michael Ippolito, Rob Karpay, Hannah Levinson, Carson Moody, Diederik Rijpstra, Mariel Roberts and Emilie Weibel.

New Music for Old Instruments (2013)

Music from the last decade for instruments from ancient times, performed by musicians who are rock stars in both baroque and contemporary worlds! Four world premieres and two encores included music by Timo Andres, Doug Balliet, Matt Frey, Molly Herron, Tristan Perich and Caroline Shaw in performances by Doug Balliett (bass gamba), Daniel McCarthy (tenor gamba), Benjamin Grow (cornet), Mellissa Hughes (soprano), Karl Larson (harpsichord), Francis Liu (baroque violin), Sam Nester (conductor) and Kirsten Sollek (contralto). This program was sponsored, in part, by the Greater New York Arts Development Fund of the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, administered by Brooklyn Arts Council (BAC).

Plus One (2012)

A free concert featuring new music for piano... plus one! This event, presented with the generous support of the New Spectrum Foundation, was a benefit to raise money for our 2013 concert New Music for Old Instruments, a concert of newly written music for a Baroque ensemble. Plus One features music by W4 directors Matt Frey, Tim Hansen, Molly Herron and Ruben Naeff, original accordion music by Albert Behar and a Baroque surprise! The concert included a raffle with a variety of prizes; beer, hot dogs, and baked goods; and general merry-making.

End of Summer II (2012)

With our second annual End of Summer Festival, we broke the boundaries of traditional musical genres by exploring creative works that defy categorization.  In 2012, two themes wound through our evening of musical offerings: first, the use of voice in music, both in a solo set by bassist Lisa Dowling and in an irreverent cabaret act co-written by Tim Hansen, Alfredo Tauste and Jesse Diener-Bennett.  The second theme of the evening was the mixing of nontraditional instrumental ensembles.  Composers Sam Crawford, Matt Frey, and Molly Herron presented music for traditional classical instruments alongside saxophone and amplified guitars, while composer Don Bosley presented a set of rock-inspired pieces for drums and guitars interlaced with flute, bass clarinet, and cello.

Cellophilia (2012)

New music for one to eight cellos, some with video, others with electronics, this program celebrates the versatility of one of our most beloved instruments. Works by Steve Reich, Yoav Shemesh, Michael Gordon, Tim Hansen, John Zorn, Matt Frey, Robert Karpay, Sarah Kirkland Snider. Performed by Ashley Bathgate, Hannah Collins, Amanda Gookin, Robert Karpay, Susan D. Mandel, Mariel Roberts, Brian Snow, Richard Vaudrey, with Jeffrey Gavett, conductor. See our press release, concert program, and performer biographies. 

End of Summer (2011)

An evening of genre defiance with experimental music from across the spectrum - whether you came to check out the inventively rearranged folk songs of The Great Republic of Rough and Ready or engaged with new music written exclusively for the multi-talented BACK vocal and percussion duo, W4's programming delivered something for all discerning ears. Also featured on this program were newly-composed works for string trio and an electro-acoustic song set by composer-performer Izzy Gliksberg. With each ensemble's set spaced throughout the evening, listeners were invited to show up for their favorites or stay for all! Premieres were heard from New York composers Chris Chappell, Matt Frey, Tim Hansen, Molly Herron, Dosia McKay, Ruben Naeff and several others alongside arrangements of music by John Dowland and Hank Williams. With Cory Bracken (percussion), Amirtha Kidambi (voice), Patti Kilroy (violin), Nick Revel (viola), Rose Bellini (cello), Elissa Spencer (voice), Sam Stein (guitar), Sam Nester (trumpet), Matt Frey (clarinet), Izzy Gliksbreg (keyboard and voice), Gil Goldin (bass), Charlotte Mundy (voice), and Chen Price (guitar, laptop).

Triangle Fire Memorial concert (2011)

In honor of the centennial of the tragic Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, W4, in alliance with the Remember the Triangle Fire Coalition, presented a ceremonial concert to commemorate the event that took the lives of 146 garment workers and impelled the start of the modern labor movement. The concert features eight composers, twenty performers and two video artists with backgrounds as varied as classical, jazz, folk, electronic, theater and film music - both traditional and experimental. This collaborative group of composers and performers went beyond genre-blending to present unique music from the heart of a new generation of sound.


Fast Forward Austin (2014)

The composers of W4 joined forces with the "stellar [...] rising young stars" (Topeka Capital-Journal) of the Skyros Quartet, presenting a set of string trios and quartets at the spectacular Fast Forward Festival in Austin, Texas.


LOFT (2012)

BODYART director Leslie Scott presented LOFT, the premiere of a work based on the movements of predatory birds and incorporating live string quartet music composed by Matt Frey, Tim Hansen, Molly Herron, Ruben Naeff, and Leaha Villarreal and realized by PULIQuartet.