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Chamber Music Series

 FRIDAY January 12 7pm
SUNDAY January 14 2pm

Enjoy music by American composers–from the classic charm of Charles Ives to the world-renowned songs of Jim Papoulis, and the premiere of his string quartet:
“Behind Shadows.”

Season Sponsor


Concert Sponsor

Nancy Loncki in Memory of Joe Loncki

2023 - 2024

1SHershey-Symphony-rehearsal WEB.jpg


The Newberry

420 Central Avenue


First Congregational Church 

2900 9th Ave S

Jim Papoulis

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Cascade Quartet


Jim Papoulis
b. 1961
Behind Shadows

Behind Shadows is a quartet in three movements that strives to demonstrate the underlying moods and shadows that exist behind us all ... That weave and connect and Dance with our emotions and thoughts ... Triggering ideas ... connections ... layers ...

Motifs passed from one player to the next, each with their own flavor and texture, weave a shadow that is both in our dreams and wonders.. but also in reality.

Sometimes shadows are independent, other times they fuse with other shadows to make another shadow......dancing with each other.

–Notes from the composer

Charles Ives

1874 – 1954
String Quartet No. 1
"From the Salvation Army"


I. Andante con moto

II. Allegro

III. Adagio Cantabile

IV. Allegro Marziale

Charles Ives' String Quartet No. 1 is a groundbreaking and innovative work that showcases the composer's unique musical language and his exploration of unconventional techniques and musical ideas. It is known as his first mature composition of extended length. Composed in 1896, this quartet is a remarkable example of Ives' experimental approach to composition.

His interest in Protestant hymn tunes expanded after becoming organist of the Danbury Baptist Church at the age of 14. This became a primary part of his composition style. His first quartet, subtitled ‘A Revival Service’ and ‘From the Salvation Army,’ is a testament to this.


The first movement of this string quartet opens with a theme in the cello that becomes fugal in nature, being answered by the viola and finally the violins. It includes the hymns ‘From Greenland’s Icy Mountains’ and ‘All Hail the Power of Jesus’ Name’.

The other three movements were written for church liturgical use where minister Griggs encouraged Ives’ compositional experimentation, stating ‘Never you mind what the ladies’ committee says, my opinion is that God gets awfully tired of hearing the same thing over and over again’.

Ives' String Quartet No. 1 is a remarkable work that pushes the boundaries of traditional classical music. Its innovative use of American folk music, unconventional harmonies, and complex rhythms make it a truly unique and groundbreaking composition. This quartet is a testament to Ives' creative genius and his ability to create music that is both intellectually stimulating and emotionally engaging.

–Notes by Christine Sherlock

Julia Wolfe
b. 1958
Four Marys

Julia Wolfe is a highly acclaimed American composer known for her innovative and powerful compositions that blend elements of classical, rock, folk, and experimental music.

Born on December 18, 1958, in Philadelphia, Wolfe developed a passion for music at a young age and went on to become one of the most influential and recognized composers of her generation.

Throughout her career, Wolfe has drawn inspiration from a wide range of sources, including historical events, literature, and social issues. Her compositions often tackle themes of social justice, feminism, and human resilience. She is known for her ability to create music that is emotionally charged, intellectually stimulating, and deeply rooted in the human experience.

Her quartets “combine the violent forward drive of rock music with an aura of minimalist serenity [using] the four instruments as a big guitar, whipping psychedelic states of mind into frenzied and ecstatic climaxes.” (The New Yorker Magazine)


Four Marys was inspired by my love for the mountain dulcimer, a 3-stringed lap instrument from Appalachia. There are no folk tunes in Four Marys, but the musical material is derived from gestures that are characteristic of dulcimer playing ––– the crying quality of the sliding melody string, the mesmerizing strumming of the drone strings. The title Four Marys is the name of a Scottish folk tune that I heard Jean Richie sing and play on mountain dulcimer. Four Marys was commissioned by the Cassatt Quartet with funds from the Koussevitzky Foundation.

–Notes by Christine Sherlock

Jim Papoulis



Both works feature singers from Great Falls public schools

The text of Kusimama is in Swahili and English. It is written in the World music style that is accessible for choirs, both young and old, who are just beginning to be exposed to world rhythms and language—a sort of introduction to new languages, syllables, body percussion, and style. The text is about standing tall on the earth, not with anger or aggression, but with hope, strength, acceptance, and positivity. Children are smaller so they stand closer to the earth.


While working in Mexico, I had the opportunity to work with young children from economically challenged areas. The children from one particular inner city school program were part of a Foundation for Small Voices songwriting workshop. The children spoke little English but were easily reached through music and rhythm. When I asked them if they had a message that they would want to say, one young girl said that she wished that adults would pay more attention to them, and when I asked her what she would say to adults, she simply called out... “Oye!”... and the song was born. When I hear the song performed, I am transported back to the streets where these children walk, go to school, live with little, and dream; they dream that somehow, somewhere, their small voices will be heard. For these children I remain an ardent listener.

–Notes from the composer


Jim Papoulis


Jim Papoulis has made significant contributions to choral music by revitalizing the choral repertoire with songs whose roots are classical and world, with voicing that incorporates lead vocalists with choirs, vocal percussion, and world rhythms.

His choral work often is sung from the perspective of the singer, and is constantly inspired by the work he does through the foundation for small voices. He firmly believes that music can heal, educate, celebrate, and empower the lives of children.

Through the Foundation for Small Voices he has conducted songwriting workshops with choirs from the United States, China, Japan, Tanzania, Mexico, Kenya, Newfoundland, Trinidad, Dominican Republic, Haiti, England, Norway, Canada, Spain, Italy, Kenya, Uganda, Turkey, Brazil, France, Ireland, Bosnia, Jordan, Australia, Holland, Dubai, and Greece. 

He has worked with choirs and ensembles on all continents and from all walks of life, and has also worked with:

Aretha Franklin, Celine Dion, Beyonce, the New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony, London Boys Choir, London Symphony, Beijing Children's Choir, Faith Hill, Natalie Cole, Snoop Dogg, Imagine Dragons,Tokyo String Quartet, Moscow Philharmonic, Portland Symphony, New World Symphony

His music has been featured at:

  • 2019 Carifesta Port of Spain, TRINIDAD

  • GIVE US HOPE on permanent exhibit at the 9/11 Museum in New York

  • 9/11 10th Anniversary Concerts throughout the world including New York, Moscow, Tokyo, Beijing, London, Oslo, Paris, Shanghai, Rio, Rome, Salzburg, St. Petersburg, Dubai, Delhi, Oslo, Paris



  • POPE VISIT televised nationally at YANKEE STADIUM


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