Chamber Music Magazine

Chamber Music is the only national magazine dedicated to the art and business of small ensemble music. A benefit of CMA membership, it's essential reading for everyone in the chamber music community.

Chamber Music Magazine Fall 2021

Fall 2021

Past Issues

Chamber Music Magazine Summer 2021

Summer 2021

Chamber Music Magazine Spring 2021

Spring 2021

Winter 2021

Winter 2021

Featured Articles

Lessons Learned Article
Lessons Learned
By Brian Wise | Summer 2021

Educators reflect on the silver linings of a deeply challenging year.

The Road Ahead
The Road Ahead
By Andrew Frank | Summer 2020

For organizations facing unprecedented financial uncertainty, a strategy built around scenario planning can help clarify the options and make hard decisions less daunting.

Long Distance Conversations
Long-Distance Conversations
By Vivien Schweitzer | Summer 2020

Classical chamber musicians adapt to a musical life lived online.

Jazz Covid Article
Locked Down, Seeking Freedom
By Larry Blumenfeld | Summer 2020

Jazz gigs disappeared. Tours vanished. Then, the world cried out.

Chicago Jazz String Summit Article
Just for Us
By Sasha Margolis | Spring 2020

Tomeka Reid thinks every jazz ensemble should have strings. Her annual Chicago Jazz String Summit—taking place via livestream this year—aims to prove it.

Climate Article
Composing a Musicians' Climate Citizenry
By Gabriela Lena Frank and Rebecca McFaul | Spring 2020

A chamber musician and a composer grapple with the environmental impact of a career in music—and begin to chart a new path forward.

Data-Based Decision Making Article
When Instincts Aren't Enough
By Andrew Frank | Spring 2020

When seasons and tours resume, presenters and ensembles will need to work strategically to get back on their feet. Audience research can help ensure their decisions are the right ones.

Harvard Article
Changing Courses
By Larry Blumenfeld | Winter 2020

At Harvard, a tight-knit community of artists and educators reconsiders how music is studied and played.

Courvoisier Vandermark
CMA Duos: Sylvie Courvoisier & Ken Vandermark
By Peter Margasak | Winter 2020

The pianist and reedist discuss their ongoing collaborations, the pivotal importance of artistic community, and the challenges of developing sophisticated improvised music in today’s arts economy.

Arturo O'Farrill Antonio Sanchez
Q&A: Arturo O'Farrill & Antonio Sanchez
By Larry Blumenfeld | Fall 2019

On making music and being Mexican in troubled times.

Kronos Quartet Hawa Kassé Mady Diabaté
An Invisible Wall
By Irem Karakaya & Emilie Pons | Fall 2019

For many international musicians, traveling to and performing in the U.S. has become prohibitively complex.

Apollo Chamber Players Sensory Friendly Children Autism
The Last Piece of the Puzzle
By Andrew Frank | Summer 2019

A growing movement to program sensory-friendly performances is bringing music and community to long-underserved populations.

Borromeo String Quartet Computers Beethoven Manuscript
Lost Between the Lines
By Sasha Margolis | Summer 2019

Nicholas Kitchen’s quest to decipher long-hidden markings in Beethoven’s original quartet manuscripts.

George Lewis Christian Wolff Composers Performers Trombone Piano
CMA Duos: George Lewis & Christian Wolff
By Peter Margasak | Summer 2019

The two composers discuss their crisscrossing histories, the unique challenges of teaching one’s own compositions, and their shared passion for what they both call relational music.

New Orleans Music
Listening for New Orleans
By Larry Blumenfeld | Summer 2019

The sound of the city, unlike any other, has always expressed both simple pleasures and complicated tensions. In the face of rapid change, can its resonance sustain?

Rise of the Reed Quintet
By Sasha Margolis | Spring 2019

How word of a new kind of chamber ensemble spread and took hold in Europe and across the US.

Mark Lomax II
Stories Across Centuries
By Eugene Holley Jr. | Spring 2019

The drummer and composer Mark Lomax II honors the 400th anniversary of the transatlantic slave trade with a massive, 12-CD concept album bridging centuries of African-American history.

WorldMusic/Crash Arts; GlobalArts Live
Hidden in Plain Sight
By Sarosh Syed | Spring 2019

How a Boston-based presenter is utilizing its festival and an ambitious rebranding effort to draw in younger audiences.

CMA Duos: Sarah Hennies & Ingrid Laubrock
By Peter Margasak | Spring 2019

The percussionist and saxophonist discuss process, place, and Hennies' recent multimedia work Contralto

Pinnacle Win
By Claire Sykes | Spring 2019

The perennially successful Banff International String Quartet Competition continues to evolve its offerings in tandem with a changing field.

Miguel Zenon and Spektral Quartet
Identity Rearranged
By Claire Sykes | Winter 2019

A new recording from Miguel Zenón and the Spektral Quartet pays homage to the music, culture, and history of Puerto Rico.

Connecting the Dots
By Keith Powers | Winter 2019

PUBLIQuartet's improvisatory programs uncover hidden connections between genres, styles, and eras.

Milford Graves and Jason Moran
CMA Duos: Milford Graves & Jason Moran
By Peter Margasak | Winter 2019

The drummer and pianist compare notes on their years of studying, teaching, and improvising.

A Greater Power
By Larry Blumenfeld | Winter 2019

The legacy of the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians keeps growing, one musician at a time.

Feedback Loop
By Nicole Loeffler-Gladstone | Fall 2018

National Sawdust inaugurates a new competition where mentorship--by and for women, trans,and non-binary composers--is central.

Mary Halvorson and Kris Davis
CMA Duos: Kris Davis & Mary Halvorson
By Peter Margasak | Fall 2018

The pianist and guitarist discuss writing lyrics, forgoing chord charts, and why playing for a distracted audience can sometimes be a blessing in disguise.

Call and Response
By Michele Mercer | Fall 2018

The We Have Voice Collective continues to deepen and expand the discussion around identity and power in the performing arts.

Gabriela Lena Frank
Life Lessons
By Ray Mark Rinaldi | Summer 2018

Inside Gabriela Lena Frank's innovative new composer academy.

Okkyung Lee and Craig Taborn
CMA Duos: Okkyung Lee and Craig Taborn
By Peter Margasak | Summer 2018

Introducing CMA Duos, a new column pairing artists for far-ranging conversations on creative practice, inspirations, and the rewards and challenges of musical collaboration.

Off the Map
Off the Map
By Michelle Mercer | Summer 2018

How today’s composers and improvisers evoke landscapes—both familiar and imaginary—in their music.

Washington Women in Jazz Festival
Balancing Act
By Morgan Greenstreet | Spring 2018

In a year of reckoning around gender inequality, two jazz festivals continue their mission to create a dedicated showcase for female artists.

Robert Mann
Remembering Robert Mann
By Sasha Margolis | Spring 2018

The visionary violinist passed away earlier this year, having left an indelible mark on the world of chamber music.

Birdfoot Festival
Branching Out
By Kyle MacMillian | Spring 2018

The seven year old Birdfoot Festival presented a 10-day line-up and two artist residencies–a total of twenty-two concerts this past year.

Fifth House Ensemble
The Inside Story
By Nicole Loeffler-Gladstone | Spring 2018

How Fifth house Ensemble harnesses the power of narrative to reach new audiences.

Resonant Encounters
Resonant Encounters
By Michelle Mercer | Summer 2017

What is it about visual art—and the open, expansive settings in which it is often presented—that helps music audiences embrace the unfamiliar?

PRIZM Ensemble
Flipping the Script
By Nicole Loeffler-Gladstone | Spring 2017

With a thriving educational outreach program, summer camp, and international festival, PRIZM Ensemble has found a winning formula that puts community first.

Chris Thile and Brad Mehldau
Chris Thile and Brad Mehldau
By Gene Santoro | Spring 2017

A new double album by the mandolinist and pianist provides a captivating entry point into the growing canon of jazz-bluegrass fusion.

Southern Exposure
Southern Exposure
By Peter Margasak | Spring 2017

With a committed volunteer network and an inclusive programming philosophy, the Hyde Park Jazz Festival has forged a uniquely unifying musical presence on Chicago’s South Side.

music note composed of people
Out of the Ether
By Shaya Bendix Lyon | Spring 2017

Collaborative work often emerges from relationships that begin in, or primarily occupy, digital space. But what may seem like just part of the work for some poses seemingly insurmountable barriers to others. What can artists do to get their work—and their voices—heard in the vast digital arena?

The Music’s Intention
The Music’s Intention
By Gene Seymour | Winter 2017

The genre-spanning genius of Paquito D’Rivera.

Third Coast Percussion performs a new work by Glenn Kotche.
San Francisco Performances’ CreativePIVOT
By Claire Sykes | Winter 2017

A new series from the established Bay Area presenter uses data-driven insights to attract—and keep—an elusive target audience.

The Dream Unfinished-founder Eun Lee at a 2016 performance.
Demanding to Be Heard
By Siddhartha Mitter | Fall 2016

Chamber musicians join the Black Lives Matter movement.

The Fry Street Quartet
Reflecting a Planet in Peril
By Nicole Loeffler-Gladstone | Fall 2016

Through new works and innovative multidisciplinary programs, these artists are fostering creative dialogue around our threatened environment—and how we might save it.

Henry Threadgill
Henry Threadgill
By Gene Santoro | Summer 2016

The uncompromising saxophonist-flutist-composer recently became the third-ever jazz musician to win a Pulitzer Prize—but he’s far from content to rest on his laurels.

The Fry Street Quartet
Far Afield
By Michelle Mercer | Summer 2016

Three artists relocate for teaching jobs—and find new audiences where they land.

Billy Childs
Q&A: Billy Childs
By CMA | Spring 2016

Introducing CMA's new president.

Jane Ira Bloom
Jane Ira Bloom: Music in Motion
By Gene Santoro | Spring 2016

Few musicians have imbued the soprano sax with such a unique voice.

Kenneth C. Fischer
A Fischer Among Men
By Alicia Anstead | Winter 2016

Kenneth C. Fischer was honored with CMA’s Richard J. Bogomolny National Service Award for his far-ranging, far-reaching career as an innovator and champion of chamber music.

Blurring Boundaries
Blurring Boundaries
By Thomas Cabaniss | Winter 2016

The worlds of arts education and community cultural development are moving closer together, providing both challenges and opportunities for growth.

Adam Schatz
The Engagement Equation
By Adam Schatz | Fall 2015

Navigating the highs and lows of social media and online engagement.

Young 'uns
Young 'uns
By Gene Santoro | Spring 2016

Making a living in the music world can be tough. Here Gene Santoro reports how six fledgling jazz musicians are building communities and carving out careers.



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