Sybarite5 with the American Composers Forum Sybarite5 with the American Composers Forum

Sat October 22nd, 2016


Main Space

Minimum Age: All Ages

Doors Open: 7:00PM

Show Time: 8:00PM

Event Ticket: $25

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Sybarite5 hailed as a “virtuosic talent with a risk-taking and original vision…” by Audiophile Audition joins forces with the American Composers Forum to present the world premiere performance of three new works by the winners of the 2016 American Composers Forum National Composition Contest. Clarice Assad  (Chicago, IL), Brandon Ridenour (New York, NY), and Steven Snowden (Austin, TX) each received a cash prize of $3,500 to create a new work for Sybarite5. These three composers were selected by the ensemble from pool of 457 applicants from 39 states and the District of Columbia.

With this event, Sybarite5 performs at (Le) Poisson Rouge, dubbed “an epicenter for adventurous music” by The New York Times, for the first time.

American Composers Forum winners

Ticketing Policy

Table seating for all seated shows is reserved exclusively for ticket holders who purchase “Table Seating” tickets. By purchasing a “Table Seating” ticket you agree to also purchase a minimum of two food and/or beverage items per person. Table seating is first come, first seated. Please arrive early for the best choice of available seats. Seating begins when doors open. Tables are communal so you may be seated with other patrons. We do not take table reservations.


A standing room area is available by the bar for all guests who purchase “Standing Room” tickets. Food and beverage can be purchased at the bar but there is no minimum purchase required in this area.


All tickets sales are final. No refund or credits.

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American Composers Forum

ACF official site | ACF on Facebook | ACF on Twitter

The American Composers Forum enriches lives by nurturing the creative spirit of composers and communities. We provide new opportunities for composers and their music to flourish, and engage communities in the creation, performance and enjoyment of new music.

John Nuechterlein, President and CEO of the ACF, had the following to say with regard to this year’s contest: “The Forum is thrilled to connect these talented composers with the extraordinary musicians of Sybarite5. Similar to our previous collaborations with Eighth Blackbird, JACK Quartet, Sō Percussion, and wild Up the opportunity for composers is invaluable to their work as young professionals, and the discovery process is equally exhilarating for the performers. We’re also excited to showcase this program at
(Le) Poisson Rouge for the large and diverse community of composers and performers in New York.”

Louis Levitt, double bassist and founder of Sybarite5, is equally excited about the culmination of this collaborative process. He writes, “We are so thrilled to be working with Steven Snowden, Clarice Assad, and Brandon Ridenour, three exciting composers with undeniable prowess and potential. Selected from mind-blowing pool of 457 intensely talented applicants, we found their voices strong, exciting and uniquely suited for our non-traditional ensemble.

A big THANK YOU to the American Composers Forum for bringing us all together and keeping new music alive and well. We can’t wait for the world premiere at LPR this fall!”

The American Composers Forum’s National Composition Contest is generously funded by an anonymous donor, and we are deeply grateful for their support of this significant ACF program.


Sybarite5 official site | Sybarite5 on Facebook | Sybarite5 on Twitter

“In a program of serial high points, there were too many to mention…an intriguing and hugely enjoyable evening in every way — and a standout in the Washington Performing Arts Society’s fine winter season.”
— The Washington Post

“Their rock-star status…is well deserved. Their classically honed technique mixed with grit and all out passionate attack transfixes the audience…” That is how the Sarasota Herald Tribune described Sybarite5, the first string quintet ever selected as a winner of the Concert Artists Guild International Competition. Comprised of Sami Merdinian and Sarah Whitney, violins; Angela Pickett, viola; Laura Metcalf, cello; and Louis Levitt, bass, Sybarite5 has taken audiences worldwide by storm, forever changing the perception of chamber music performance. From the moment their bows hit the strings, this quintet of talented, diverse musicians takes the audience on an exciting ride that engages the senses and redefines the rules.

From Mozart to Radiohead and Visconti to Akiho, Sybarite5’s eclectic repertoire and commanding performance style is turning heads throughout the music world: the quintet’s debut EP Disturb the Silence, featuring music by Radiohead and Piazzolla, plus original works written for Sybarite5, was released in 2011 and quickly reached the top ten on the Billboardcharts. Their follow-up album Everything In Its Right Place was released at Carnegie Hall in 2012.

In the 2015-2016 season, the group appears in performances and residencies across the country at series including The Schubert Club in St. Paul, MN, Celebrity Series Stave Sessions in Boston, MA, Carnegie Hall Neighborhood Concerts, National Sawdust, in residence at the cell in New York City, as well as the Ravinia and Grand Teton Music Festivals, among many others. Sybarite5 is also the only Classical Contemporary Artist selected for the prestigious 2015-2016 Mid Atlantic Arts Tour funded by the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation.

Career performance highlights include Sybarite5’s Carnegie Hall debut at Zankel Hall, Library of Congress, Wolf Trap, and Washington Performing Arts Society in DC, Caramoor Center,Grand Tetons Music Festival, Aspen Music Festival, Celebrity Series of Boston, New Docta International Music Festival in Argentina, Walla Walla Chamber Music Festival, Tuckamore Festival in Newfoundland, Canada, UC San Diego ArtPower, Cliburn Concerts in Texas, Indiana State University Lively Arts and Weis Center at Bucknell University in Pennsylvania, University of Arizona, Sun Valley Center for the Arts, Fairbanks and Anchorage Concert Associations in Alaska, and in New York at Lincoln Center, Time Warner Center, Tishman Auditorium, SubCulture, Galapagos Artspace, Mannes School of Music, the Apple Store, the Museum of Sex, the Core Club and the Cutting Room. The group has also performed on the CBS Early Show and for his Holiness the Dalai Lama. In spring 2015, the quintet gave the world premiere of BEATBOX, the very first concerto for string quintet and orchestra, written by acclaimed American composer Dan Visconti with a consortium of orchestras including the Duluth Superior Symphony Orchestra, the South Carolina Philharmonic, and the Midland Symphony.

In addition to its ongoing touring programs Outliers, Coming Together, Look Back/Move Forward, Everything in its Right Place, and The Shuffle Effect, the group offers So You Think You Can Compose?, a unique interactive program featuring a series of short newly-commissioned works by student composers, in collaboration with University composition departments.

Most recently, Sybarite5 received an award from the American Composers Forum to commission three composers to write new works that will tour in 2016-2017. In addition, Sybarite5 was awarded the Sylvia Ann Hewlett Adventurous Artist Prize, and has received commissioning awards from BMI, Chamber Music America, Concert Artists Guild and the Look & Listen Festival. Composers recently commissioned to write new works for Sybarite5 include Andy Akiho, Kenji Bunch, Eric Byers, Shawn Conley, Mohammed Fairouz, Michael Gilbertson, Jessica Meyer, Daniel Bernard Roumain, Michi Wiancko, and Lev Zhurbin.

Formed at the Aspen Music Festival, Sybarite5 was the first string quintet admitted to the Aspen Advanced String Quartet Studies program in 2008. From 2009-2013 the ensemble continued its tenure at the Aspen Music Festival in a new capacity as the AMFS Alumni Ensemble. The ensemble is now based in New York City and maintains a residency at the cell theatre.

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