patchtax with Abby Swidler and Elizabeth Epsen @mobius
Saturday June 4th, 2016: 8pm
Suggested Donation: $10
patchtax is a viola and saxophone duo based in Boston and currently in their fourth season. The duo explores unconventional performance practices within the realm of classical chamber music. During summer 2015, patchtax crowdfunded a northeast tour and recording project that culminated in the release of their first album at the beginning of 2016. patchtax toured with dancer Elizabeth Epsen and composer/sound engineer Kevin Laba. Their work with dancer Elizabeth Epsen eliminates boundaries between the dancer and musicians, creating work that is both sensual and absurd. Performances were held in Montpelier, Burlington, Montreal and Quebec City and experiences were documented through the creation of music videos. In December of 2015, patchtax organized a performance at MakeShift Boston that was a culmination of the touring and recording project. Here, patchtax collaborated with public artist Daniel Sternof Beyer (New American Public Art), and dancer Elizabeth Epsen, in a performance that experimented with the theatrics of live concert performance, interpretations of patchtax’s music videos, the embodiment of musicians, and the shared physical space of musicians, dancer, and audience. hey spent the month of February in residency at the Banff Centre in Canada, where they continued their exploration of theatricality in music performance.
Over the past four seasons, patchtax has performed extensively in the northeast, at Brandeis University, Brooklyn College, the Advent Library Concert Series, SpectrumNYC, ChagallPAC (performance art collaborative), the OpenSound Concert Series, the Somerville Armory, Groupmuse events, the New Art Center, the Nave Gallery Series, BrickBottom Gallery, and Junk Kitchen Series. patchtax’s first commissioning project was in the fall of 2013, where a set of six short duos by six different composers were written to be performed with a food pairing. This created a multi-sensorial experience for the audience. During the Spring of 2014, patchtax created the piece “Love” with composer David Dominique that began and ended with the staging of a ritualistic and surreal dining room scene. In addition to the food and music commissioning project, patchtax has had five new works written for them by Boston, New York and Chicago area composers. In January of 2015, patchtax spent a month in residency at the Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts in Saratoga, Wyoming, which was a fully funded retreat. patchtax was invited to perform at the 2015 World Saxophone Congress in Strasbourg, France.
Violist Eve Boltax is an active performer and teaching artist in the northeast. She is a founding member of the saxophone and viola duo, patchtax, who collaborates frequently with a wide variety of artists across various disciplines and recently released their debut album. She is the violist of the Cardamom Quartet, an ensemble of Boston based teaching artists, who were the quartet-in-residence at El Sistema Somerville in 2014. She has performed as principal violist with Boston’s Symphony Nova, the Banff Festival Orchestra, and the Longy Conservatory Orchestra and in the sections of many local orchestras including the Burlington Chamber Orchestra, the New Bedford Symphony, Cape Ann Symphony, and the Boston Conservatory Orchestra. As a performer of new music she can be heard with the Equillibrium Ensemble and she also performs regularly with the classical period instrument orchestra, Grand Harmonie.
As a teaching artist, Eve works with TERC, the Boston Arts Academy, the Broad Institute, the Vermont Creative Education Lab, and has trained at Lincoln Center Education. Her 2016 season includes residencies at the Banff Centre for the Arts and Avaloch Farm. She was an artist in residence at Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts in Saratoga, Wyoming in January of 2015.
Eve received her Master of Music degree at the Longy School of Music as a student of Dimitri Murrath and was the recipient of the President’s Award for Teaching Artistry. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Massachusetts Amherst where was a student of Elizabeth Chang and the recipient of the Julian Olevsky Scholarship and the 2010 Concerto Competition Winner.
Saxophonist Mary Joy Patchett is an avid supporter and performer of new music. Mary Joy is a founding member of the viola and saxophone duo, patchtax, which has been actively performing in Boston and New York since 2013. The duo often collaborates with other artists, most recently combining their efforts with a dancer and lighting designer. Patchtax recently completed their first album, which is the result of a fully crowdfunded tour and recording project that took them to Vermont, Montreal and Quebec City over the summer of 2015. This past season, Mary Joy has performed with the EQ Ensemble, Sound Icon, Tanglewood Music Center, Chagall Performing Arts Collective, among others. She recently recorded a chamber opera by Beth Wiemann and premiered a baritone saxophone version of a solo work by William Kenlon. Mary Joy was residence at the Banff Centre for the Arts in Alberta, Canada in February 2016.
Past projects have included appearances with/at the New York City Electronic Music Festival, Boston Microtonal Society, Washington Square Contemporary Music Society in New York, and the East Coast Contemporary Ensemble. Mary Joy has performed as a soloist in New England Conservatory’s Jordan Hall with the NEC Contemporary Ensemble. As an ensemble member, she performed with the Paris Conservatory’s Saxophone Ensemble and has toured the Midwest with the Eastman Wind Ensemble. Mary Joy toured Holland with the Thump Quartet, an all-female saxophone quartet in 2007. As a member of the East Coast Contemporary Ensemble, Ms. Patchett has premiered several solo and ensemble works at the annual Etchings Festival in Auvillar, France, as well as the 2012 La Pietra Forum in Florence, Italy. She was an artist in residence at Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts in Saratoga, Wyoming in January of 2015.
Ms. Patchett has played in masterclasses with renowned saxophonists including Jean-Marie Londeix, Jean-Michel Goury and the members of the Rascher Saxophone Quartet. She received a Bachelor of Music degree from New England Conservatory studying with Ken Radnofsky, and a Master of Music degree from Eastman School of Music studying with Chien-Kwan Lin. Mary Joy has studied natural movement, massage therapy, eastern medicine, with a special passion for injury prevention with musicians. She is currently studying to become a Restorative Exercise Specialist and is a certified MovNat trainer. Mary Joy lives in Boston and teaches saxophone at the Wellesley Public Schools.
Abby Swidler is a violinist, violist, and vocalist from Missoula, MT. She has roots in classical music and is a songwriter, composer, improvisor, and passionate collaborator.
She is currently involved in a diverse variety of collaborative musical projects. Highlights include Phoenix Ensemble, Boston’s brand new innovative orchestra; The Peabody Essex Museum’s immersive theater experience All At Once Upon a Time; Tredici Bacci, NYC’s Ennio Morricone inspired Italian Pop band; and Fathoms, a free improvisation ensemble exploring timbres, forms, and intimate sounds. She released her first self-titled EP of songs in May of 2015.
As a songwriter and composer, Abby’s music is filled with vivid imagery and striking melodies. Described as “astonishingly subtle” by Boston’s Trill Picks, She explores timbres, dissonance, and unique instrumentations. She was an Artist in Residence at Banff Centre for the Arts in November, 2014. Her piece for solo performer on cello and voice, “Vesper”, was premiered in March 2015, in Lucerne, Switzerland, at the Klangbad Festival.
She has performed across North America, South America, Central America, and Europe. Highlights include a feature performance at Boston’s Times Two Series (2015), teaching at the Panama Jazz festival (2014), playing with Boston’s Discovery Ensemble Orchestra (2011-14), performing and recording with Rabbit Rabbit Radio (2013), and performing with the California Guitar Trio (2012). She was a finalist in the 2011 John Lennon Scholarship Contest.
She graduated with a B.M. in Violin Performance from Eastman School of Music in 2011, from the studio of Charles Castleman and recently received a M.M. in Contemporary Improvisation from the New England Conservatory. She currently teaches private lessons and songwriting at the New England Conservatory’s preparatory department and frequently performs in Boston, NYC, and beyond!
Originally from Tucson, AZ, Elizabeth Epsen received her training at the San Francisco Ballet School (professional division), where she also performed in corps de ballet roles with the San Francisco Ballet. She attended a year-round program at Canada’s National Ballet School as well as summer programs at the School of American Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet School, and Exploring Ballet with Suzanne Farrell at the Kennedy Center, among others. As a dancer in the Boston area, Elizabeth has performed works by New England-based choreographers including Adriane Brayton, Adrienne Hawkins, and James Morrow, and is currently working with Nicole Pierce, choreographer/founding artistic director of EgoArt, Inc. Elizabeth regularly collaborates with the Boston-based saxophone and viola duo patchtax to create and perform dances that play with live performance, video, and the relationships between dancer and musician. Elizabeth graduated from Creighton University with a B.A. in Philosophy and Art History. She has additionally made a career in arts administration and currently works as Program Assistant for Dance at Harvard University.