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New Sounds Live

"The most bad-ass quartet around,” ETHEL, teams up with Dutch multi-media composer JacobTV for the next New Sounds Live concert at 7:30 on March 11, 2010 at Merkin Hall. Hear the U.S. premieres of Dolly Shot and Syracuse Blues along with new versions of works specially arranged for and dedicated to ETHEL: Capriccio, Jesus is Coming, Take A Wild Guess, Body of Your Dreams, Grab It! and String Quartet No. 3.

Merkin Hall
at Kaufman Center, 129 W. 67th Street
(between Broadway and Amsterdam)
» Tickets
» New Sounds Live 2009-2010 Concert Season

An outlaw in the established modern classical music scene, Dutch avant-pop composer JacobTV ( Jacob Ter Veldhuis) is one of the most performed European composers. TV's rock band past converged with his time spent at conservatory, lately weaving American media (yes, even Jerry Springer) and world events into his works. Early in his career, Jacob TV stood up to what he called the ‘washed-out avant garde’, which made him a controversial figure in certain circles – he was even accused of musical terrorism! He strives to liberate new music from its isolation by spurning dissonance – and he has no objection to a piece being entertaining.

This concert will be webcast on Q2 and recorded for future New Sounds broadcast.
Jacob TVJacobTV
Dutch ‘avant pop’ composer JacobTV (Jacob Ter Veldhuis 1951) started as a rock musician and studied composition and electronic music at the Groningen Conservatory, where he was awarded the Composition Prize of the Netherlands in 1980. He became a full time composer and soon made a name for himself with melodious compositions, straight from the heart and with great effect. ‘I pepper my music with sugar,’ he says. Long queues at the box office of the four-day Jacob TV Festival in Rotterdam in 2001 already attested to his growing popularity. The NRC called him the ‘Jeff Koons of new music’ and his ‘coming-out’ as a composer of ultra-tonal, mellifluous music reached its climax with the video oratorio Paradiso, premiered the day after 9-11 and released on CD and DVD by British record label Chandos.

To try to describe JacobTV's music, think post minimalism and romanticism with a liberal dose of rock, jazz, and pop culture in the mix, shunning high modernism like a vampire might protect himself from morning light. He is "preoccupied with American media and world events and draws raw material from those sources. His work possesses an explosive strength and raw energy combined with extraordinarily intricate architectural design." (Limor Tomer, WNYC) TV makes superb use of electronics, incorporating sound bytes from political speeches, commercials, interviews, talk shows, TVangelists, and what have you - a colorful mix of high and low culture.

ETHEL boldly infuses contemporary concert music with fierce intensity, questioning the boundaries between performer and audience, tradition and technology. Formed in 1998, New York’s ebullient ETHEL is comprised of Juilliard-trained performers Cornelius Dufallo (violin), Ralph Farris (viola), Dorothy Lawson (cello) and Mary Rowell (violin).

Musically omnivorous, prolific, and passionate, "America's favorite string band" incorporates rock, blues, classical, jazz and other popular genres to create a sound that defies categorization. Described as "the fiercest string quartet this side of hell," and "the most bad-ass quartet around," ETHEL has performed over 300 shows in ten different countries as a favorite at countless festivals and venues around the globe.

Embracing today’s most exhilarating music, ETHEL has performed with Joe Jackson, Kurt Elling, Bang on a Can, Todd Rundgren, David Byrne, Ursula Oppens, Loudon Wainwright III, STEW, Ensemble Modern, Jill Sobule, Joshua Fried, Andrew Bird, Iva Bittová, Colin Currie, Thomas Dolby, Steve Coleman, Stephen Gosling, Jake Shimabukuro and Polygraph Lounge.

Their repertoire includes adventurous music of the past four decades, with emphasis on works composed since 1995. ETHEL performs compositions by quartet members, as well as works by such luminaries as Julia Wolfe, Phil Kline, John Zorn, Steve Reich, John King, JacobTV, David Lang, Scott Johnson, Don Byron, Marcelo Zarvos, Evan Ziporyn, and Mary Ellen Childs, to name a few. 

ETHEL has released several albums since their debut, the self-titled ETHEL (Cantaloupe Music, 2003), which was named one of Billboard’s “Best Albums” for that year. The group’s next recording, Light (Cantaloupe Music, 2006), was selected as #3 on’s “Best of 2006: Top Classical Editor’s Picks.” The group has appeared as guest artist on a dozen music labels and was recently featured with vocal group Lionheart on John the Revelator: A Mass for Six Voices by Phil Kline (Cantaloupe, Music, 2008) and the Grammy® Award-winning Dedicated to You: Kurt Elling Sings the Music of Coltrane and Hartman (Concord Records, 2009).

Additional Resources:
» ETHEL's website
» Jacob TV's website
» New Sounds Live 2009-2010 Concert Season
» Merkin Hall

JacobTV lives in the Dutch country side. Momentarily he is composing a video opera called ’The News’ about the credit crunch and other world events, while touring with his JacobTV Band and the multi media show ‘Cities Change The Songs Of Birds’.