Fresh inc festival 2021

Fifth House Ensemble is pleased to announce the 2021 Fresh Inc Festival, open to composers, performers, composer-performers, and pre-formed ensembles. Applicants must be a minimum of 18 years of age. Fresh Inc is open to all instruments and to artists from any musical tradition, whether enrolled in a degree program or pursuing their craft independently.

Since 2012, Fresh Inc has helped performerscomposersand pre-formed ensembles to envision and launch their own authentic careers in music, rooted in adventurous genre-defying collaboration, entrepreneurial thinking, and meaningful partnerships with audiences and community.

If there’s one thing we’ve learned in our 15-year history here at Fifth House Ensemble, it’s that our strength as artists is the way we engage our creativity and flexibility in times like these.

To meet this moment, our 2021 festival will continue as a digitally-connected experience. Building on our 2020 Digital Edition last June, we have reimagined the festival from the ground up to incorporate teaching culled from a season’s worth of creative projects, including adventurous digital collaborations with emerging composers nationwide, audience-interactive video game presentations, and mindfulness practices that bring embodied, human connection to online interaction and social service.

During a time when emerging artists need more support than ever before, Fresh Inc provides the tools to create, collaborate, and present in a digital space. We believe that empowering artists to meet the challenges of our field’s changing landscape is the best way to prepare for the future.

With specialized tracks for pre-formed ensembles, composer/improvisers, auditors, and via our Fresh Voices scholarship program, our aim is to build to coolest, kindest, most courageously imaginative festival anywhere around by seeking out those who are trailblazing their own paths as the next generation of impact-makers.

We’ll remotely rehearse and premiere 24 new works of chamber music and hone our skills through over 35 workshops, 10 digital performances, private lessons, and individual advising sessions. We will learn from the top experts and leaders in our community, including panel discussions on anti-racist practices and gender diversity so we can build a more just future together.

On top of that, Fresh Inc is above all a social experience – a gathering place for unconventional and responsive thinkers, a laboratory for experimentation, and a place to form lifelong connections and birth new collaborations over s’mores.

Every year, participants:

The Digital Edition includes:

  • Digital premieres – Our work with composers over the past several months have resulted in some of the most collaborative and imaginative projects in our history. This summer, we’re commissioning festival composers to write new works that can be presented in a livestream premiere format this June. Commissioned by the Steven R. Gerber Trust, last year’s works ranged from pieces that can be pre-recorded separately in parts to experimental works that take advantage of networks, latency, and digital platforms in their construction. All new commissions will be premiered on the final days of the festival.
  • Live streamed performances – Each year, we reach audiences of every age through performances in spaces both traditional and unexpected. Live streamed events range from digital showcases to informal salons and interactive educational events. Stay tuned for more details!
  • New content – Artists across the country are called on to bring their work to audiences in new ways via digital platforms. We’re going to bring you tools for taking your work online through recording, streaming, and virtual collaboration – including learnings from our partnerships with San Francisco State University and Dolby Laboratories (Dolby) this Spring, which explore new compositional processes that take advantage of spatial sound created through Dolby Atmos.
  • Extended timelines – We’ll be supporting participants and their work over a longer span of time. We start with an early roll-out of session material, ensemble meetings, and workshops before the festival, and follow up with opportunities to stay connected over the next year.
  • The Digital Edition – Audit the festival via our Digital Edition, which includes access to all of our workshops and content online for a full year.

Instrumental Faculty

Fifth House Ensemble

Praised by the New York Times for its “conviction, authority, and finesse,” the Chicago-based Fifth House Ensemble harnesses the collaborative spirit of chamber music to reach beyond the traditionally-perceived limits of classical music. The ensemble’s artistic, educational, and civic programs engage theater groups, video game designers, corporate innovators, and folk bands to share stories as diverse as the communities it serves.

Composition Faculty

Our internationally-recognized composition faculty includes artists whose careers and landmark projects are defined by adventurous partnerships with artists, audiences, and communities alike.

  • Lisa Bielawa, Rome Prize; Co-founder of MATA Festival; commissions from Jennifer Koh, Brooklyn Rider, and the NY Phil Biennial
  • Jennifer Higdon, Pulitzer Prize; multiple GRAMMY Awards; commissions from the Philadelphia Orchestra and Eighth Blackbird; fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, and the American Academy of Arts & Letters
  • Shawn Okpebholo, Commissions from the US Army Field Band, soprano J’Nai Bridges, and Cadillac Moon Ensemble; performances at Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, and the National Cathedral
  • Daniel Bernard Roumain, Acclaimed violinist; collaborated with Sydney Opera House; Emmy award winner for work with ESPN; Institute Professor & Professor of Practice at Arizona State University
  • Steven Snowden, Fulbright Scholar; co-founder/director of Fast Forward Austin Music Festival
  • Alex Temple, Collaborations with Spektral Quartet and American Composers Orchestra; Assistant Professor of Music Composition at Arizona State University
  • Dan Visconti, Rome and Berlin Prizes; commissions from the Kronos Quartet, Branford Marsalis, and Opera Philadelphia; TED Fellow
  • Austin Wintory, GRAMMY-nominated video game and film composer; multiple British Academy Award nominations

Guest Experts

Guest experts join Fifth House Ensemble for various workshops, bringing a diverse range of vision and experience to support these two weeks of artistic discovery. Our guest experts have included graphic artists, marketing executives, theatre directors and renowned composers, leading interactive workshops that will help you to redefine your artistic vision.

  • Jason Charney, Electroacoustic musician & composer
  • Chicago Opera Theater
  • Cliff Colnot, Director of Orchestra Activities, DePaul University
  • Daniel Dorff, VP, Theodore Presser Company
  • Tad Gray, Wealth Advisor, Buckingham Strategic Wealth, Leadership Coach, Fifth House Ensemble Board President
  • Matthew Koschak, Staff Acoustical Engineer at Shure Inc.
  • Hummie Mann, Emmy-winning composer, Seattle Film Institute
  • Daniel McKemie, Electronic Musician, Percussionist, and Composer
  • Parker Nelson, Arranger, Education Specialist, and 5HE Horn Player
  • Michael Rohd, Founding Artistic Director, Sojourn Theatre; Founding Artist, Center for Performance and Civic Practice
  • Donovan Seidle, Composer & Concertmaster of Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Paul Wang, Associate Professor, Medill IMC, Northwestern University

ELIGIBILITY: Applications are accepted from composers, performers, and pre-formed ensembles. Applicants must be a minimum of 18 years of age. Fresh Inc is open to all instruments and to artists from any musical tradition, whether enrolled in a degree program or pursuing their craft independently.

SCHOLARSHIPS: All applicants are considered for merit-based scholarships as part of the application process. Our Fresh Voices program offers dedicated scholarship support to participants who are female, artists of color, and/or LGBTQ-identified, to build leadership capacity, career advancement, and entrepreneurial skills among artists underrepresented in our field. For the first time this season, six composers of color will be selected to attend tuition-free as Fromm Foundation Fellows.