San Francisco Contemporary Music Players has been sustained from the start by an entire community of dedicated and adventurous individuals. It is because of you that we have reached the milestone of our 50th season. This is a time to celebrate the achievements of our tremendous community and enjoy the irresistible spirit of the ensemble.

This milestone season offers the work of 26 composers with 7 from California, 2 large-scale commissioning projects, 7 distinct world, U.S. or West Coast premieres with a spotlight on large-ensemble works, and several special events and community engagement activities at five different venues across the season in the city of San Francisco and its principal neighborhoods. Mainstage presentations at the Atrium Theater at The War Memorial, San Francisco Conservatory of Music, and the ODC Theater in the Mission District will be augmented by community and celebratory activities in the gallery spaces of Root Division and ArtHaus SF, and by the Contemporary Players’ annual masterclass series and educational programs.

In addition, SF Contemporary Players is thrilled to be presenting the work of three preeminent artists from its group of Creative Advisors over the course of the season. Joining forces with the Contemporary Players will be vocalist, instrumentalist and Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Caroline Shaw, MacArthur Grant recipient, composer, and multi-instrumentalist Tyshawn Sorey, and multi-talented Bay Area artist and recent Rome Prize recipient Pamela Z. These stellar artists will appear as collaborators, commissioned composers and guest performers on the 50th season subscription concerts, adding their voices to a wide array of programming that will showcase the collective and individual virtuosity of the Contemporary Players’ roster of outstanding musicians, and will celebrate the mission, history and future of this long-standing ensemble.

Our first concert of the season begins on October 10, 2020 and we hope given the circumstances that the upcoming season will take place in the concert hall; however, we are prepared to pivot if need be (safety comes first). To that end, all season tickets are transferable if an event is postponed to a future date, or cancelled.

The momentum and air of excitement is palpable as we head into our 50th season. We hope you will join us in this celebratory and landmark year by purchasing season tickets today.

Season Tickets

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OCTOBER 2020

on STAGE series
Voices in Reverberation
SAT, OCT 10, 2020
7:00pm How Music is Made with Caroline Shaw and Pamela Z | 8:00pm Concert | Post-concert Party
at Taube Atrium Theater at the War Memorial Veterans Building

For our on STAGE series and the opening concert of a milestone 50th anniversary season, we shine a spotlight on West Coast composers to celebrate some of the brightest luminaries from the Bay Area. Resident rockstar John Adams demonstrates his technical prowess in the riveting, large-ensemble work Son of Chamber Symphony. We experience a new work by Caroline Shaw commissioned by San Francisco Contemporary Music Players written for instrumental quartet and celebrated Bay Area sound artist and vocalist Pamela Z . The inexpressible Amadeus Regucera thrills us with textual utterances and deep breaths and Los Angeles’ Andrew Norman takes us on a sonic journey visiting the interior light of the Basilica of Saint Sabina.

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NOVEMBER 2020

ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION
50th Celebration and Benefit Concert
SUN, NOV 15, 2020, 6:00 – 9:30 pm
Single tickets on sale in July. Subscribers and Members are eligibile for early access now. 
$125 General / $100 Subscribers/Members
Only 60 seats available!
at ArtHaus, San Francisco

50th year celebration

For many years, the Contemporary Players’ activities have explored the intersections between music and visual art with performances in the museums and galleries of the city. In celebration with ArtHaus SF, we revive that experience in our 50th season through a unique event that includes curated art viewing in this privately-owned gallery, mingling with open bar and passed hors d’oeuvres, special presentations, and an intimate concert highlighting the solo and chamber music artistry of players from SFCMP’s roster of virtuosi, sharing works by celebrated living composers that are among their personal favorite ‘party pieces,’ and in some cases were written specifically for them. Limited to 60 spots only, this exclusive evening with the Contemporary Players, in commemoration of the 50th season and in support of many more ahead, is an historic, one-of-a-kind event that will sell out fast. 

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DECEMBER 2020

in the COMMUNITY series
Sound Encounters in collaboration with CNMAT, UC Berkeley
SUN, DEC 6, 2020
3:00pm-4:30pm
at Root Division, San Francisco

In our December in the COMMUNITY series, we invite everyone to experience sound art in an installation-style setting while we capture sonic material for a community-driven time capsule to celebrate SFCMP’s 50th. SFCMP percussionist William Winant kicks off the program with his uniquely personal interpretation of James Tenney’s Koan: Having Never Written a Note for Percussion followed by performances of the work of three of the Bay Area’s leading sound artists from the Center for New Music and Audio Technologies: Jon Kulpa, Maija Hynninen, and Jon Yu. Take a break from the holidays and join us for live music, conversation, snacks, and drinks to enliven the festive atmosphere. Free, open to the public, and kid friendly.

DETAILS

JANUARY 2021

in the LABORATORY series
Overtones and Undercurrents
SAT, JAN 16, 2021
7:00pm How Music is Made with Fred Frith | 8:00pm Concert | Post-concert Party
at Caroline Hume Concert Hall, SF Conservatory of Music, San Francisco

Our 50th season in the LABORATORY series explores the boundaries of sound generation in a program that breaks apart and re-combines the elements of amplified music, especially Rock. Electric guitars acting as percussion instruments and subwoofer cones as pulse generators bring us back to the appearance of Prog-Rocker Frank Zappa as guest conductor for SFCMP in the ‘80’s. The concert vibrates with works by composers exploring the tension between the natural and the artificial including two new works by students of the SFCM Technology and Applied Composition Department. Sonic essays by celebrated Bay Area artist Fred Frith and San Francisco native Mary Kouyoumdjian draw us in and focus our ears while Ashley Fure and Donnacha Dennehy pull apart the components of speakers and the natural harmonic series.  

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MARCH 2021

​​​​​​​SFCMP MASTERCLASS series
THUR MAR 4, 2021, 7:30pm
in collaboration with SFCM String Department
Led by Hrabba Atladottir
at Sol Joseph Recital Hall, SF Conservatory of Music, San Francisco

In our ongoing Masterclass series and chamber concert, we interact with some of the most talented Bay Area pre-professional musicians in live performance with our renowned ensemble members. Students bring selected works to the stage while being mentored in the techniques, skills, and myriad styles of contemporary music performance. This season’s masterclass and chamber concert focuses on contemporary repertoire for stringed instruments in solo and chamber settings, coached by violinist Hrabba Atladottir.

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APRIL 2021

at the CROSSROADS series
PostScript to the Future
SAT APR 10, 2021
7:00pm How Music is Made with Tyshawn Sorey | 8:00pm Concert | Post-concert Party
at ODC B. Way Theater, San Francisco

For the final concert of a landmark 50th season, our at the CROSSROADS series reflects an ongoing exploration of music that exists in the innovative realms of cross-genre connectivity. The Contemporary Players join their trans-Atlantic compatriots at Ensemble Intercontemporain by co-commissioning a new work from NYC-based composer and multi-instrumentalist Tyshawn Sorey, whose fluency across stylistic streams has distinguished him as one of the most compelling voices in contemporary music today. Connecting the threads to a figure that Sorey has long considered a key inspiration for his work, we spotlight the life and legacy of composer and longtime Bay Area resident Olly Wilson, a close friend and collaborator of the Contemporary Players for years. Jazz-trained cellist and composer Tomeka Reid joins the conversation, along with the premiere of our annual SF Search for Scores winning composition, framing an emerging generation of composers whose work launches out on divergent paths along the same cross-genre trajectories. 

DETAILS AND TICKETS