Nov. 19 free

Believing that music makes community, the Washington Square Music Festival, on Sunday, November 19, at 3 pm, offers a celebration of the upcoming holiday season with Explorations in Music/Art/Dance. The concert’s featured work is the world premiere of “Skyscrapers,” a string quartet by Heather Schmidt inspired by the Paul Klee painting “Composition 1914” and commissioned by the Washington Square Music Festival. Dancers from the Annabella Gonzalez Dance Theatre will explore the music of J.S. Bach and György Kurtág, and the Chamber Ensemble will perform works by W.A. Mozart and Benedetto Marcello. The performance is free, and seating is first-come, first-served.

The venue is St. Marks Church-in-the-Bowery, 131 East 10th St., New York NY 10003.
On the site of St. Marks in 1660 was the private chapel of Peter Stuyvesant. The current structure was built in 1779, and more recently has welcomed a range of traditional and
avant-garde performances, as well as hosting Sunday worship services.


St. Marks Church-in-the-Bowery, 131 East 10th Street
Subway: N, R at 8th St.-NYU; 6 at Astor Place

For information: (212) 252-3621 | www.washingtonsquaremusicfestival.org

Eriko Sato, violin 1
Theresa Salomon, violin 2
Veronica Salas, viola
Lutz Rath, cello
Gerard Reuters, oboe
Dancers Lucia Campoy & Heather Panikkar from the Annabella Gonzalez Dance Theatre

  • Benedetto Marcello: Concerto for Oboe and Strings in C minor
  • Johann Sebastian Bach: Cello Solo Suite No 1, Minuet 1 & 2 & dancers
  • György Kurtág:  “Hommage à Bach”, solo violin & dancers
  • Heather Schmidt: “Skyscrapers” String Quartet World Premiere
    Commissioned by the Washington Square Music Festival
    & Sponsored by the Garrett-Waldmeyer Trust
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: Oboe Quartet in F major k.370/K368b

…about the “Skyscrapers” Composer

Heather SchmidtThe Paul Klee painting “Composition 1914” was selected for musical inspiration by both the composer, and the supporters underwriting her commission, the Garrett-Waldmeyer Trust. The original masterpiece is an oil on cardboard, made up of numerous multi-colored rectangular shapes with a small plant-like object near the bottom, and is housed in the collection of Kunstmuseum Basel. Composer Schmidt transformed each of its six vertical zones into an equal number of movements, and turned three tiny greenish brushstrokes into a three-note motif reappearing in each movement.

The painting’s structure “reminded me of the building blocks of a skyscraper,” Ms. Schmidt says, “a fitting title for a quartet to be premiered in New York City.”

The composer, a native of Canada who currently resides in Los Angeles, has recently scored well over a dozen major projects, including several movies for television. Her substantial body of work also includes a host of orchestral and chamber pieces, including recent premieres in both the American southwest and Europe.

“This new string quartet is the first major independent music commission in our six decades,” says Peggy Friedman, the Festival’s Executive Director, “and it’s the perfect work to preview our 60th Anniversary season in 2018, and celebrate the community of this incredible metropolis.”

Klee, Composition 1914Annabella Gonzalez Dance Theater, established in 1976 by its Mexican-born dancer/choreographer, produces dance compositions filtered through a blend of contrasting and subtly cohering styles. The company’s approach might be termed eclectic and embracing, as it employs jazz, Latin and neo-classical dance forms that range from the soberly dramatic to the broadly comic.

…about the Sponsors & Supporters

In recent years the Garrett-Waldmeyer Trust has helped bring a number of music commissions to fruition, and is proud to support Heather Schmidt’s creation of “Skyscrapers” and its world premiere in New York City. The Trust believes that beautiful music lives within the heart and soul of all humanity, and deserves our universal devoted support.

The Washington Square Music Festival is made possible with public funding through Councilmember Margaret Chin and The New York City Department of Cultural Affairs; New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature; Gale Brewer, Borough President of Manhattan, and the help and support of NYC Parks and Recreation.  Generous grants from The Earle K. & Katherine F. Moore Foundation, the Garrett-Waldmeyer Trust, The Washington Square Association, Music Performance Trust Fund, The Margaret Neubart Foundation Trust, New York University Community Affairs & NYU Community Fund, Salamon-Abrams Family Fund, the Washington Square Park Conservancy, Con Edison, The Hilaria and Alec Baldwin Foundation, and Three Sheets Saloon/Off the Wagon/Down the Hatch are deeply appreciated.