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Third Coast Percussion: Exploring the possibilities of music for twenty years

Third Coast Percussion
Marc Perlish
Third Coast Percussion

Melony Dodson talks with members of the Grammy award-winning quartet, Third Coast Percussion, who performs at the 2024 Big Ears Festival. They will present music by Steve Reich, Philip Glass, Jlin, Tyondai Braxton, Devonte Hynes, Ivan Trevino, and more.

Third Coast Percussion is the first percussion ensemble to ever win a Grammy award. For nearly twenty years, the Chicago-based quartet has created exciting and unexpected performances, directly connecting with audiences in creative ways, often encouraging them to actively participate in the music-making. Commissioning new compositions is at the core of Third Coast's mission and they have commissioned dozens of new works. Also at the core of the ensemble's mission is educational and community outreach and they have created numerous programs to fulfill that mission. Learn more here: https://thirdcoastpercussion.com/education/

This is Third Coast Percussion's first time at the Big Ears Festival and they will present two sets. The first is on Thursday, March 21st at The Point at 7pm. The second set is on Friday, March 22nd at 4pm at the Knoxville Museum of Art and will be open to the public, as will all of the performances at the museum of art. Learn more about the music they are presenting on these programs in this interview. Also, learn more about the logistics and challenges of being a touring percussionist and get a sneak peek at what they have planned to celebrate their 20th Anniversary!

Additional information about the Big Ears Festival is at https://bigearsfestival.org/
Additional information about Third Coast Percussion is at https://thirdcoastpercussion.com/

Melony calls the beautiful mountains of Boone, N.C., home, although she was born near Greensboro, N.C. There’s just something about those Blue Ridge Mountains that got in her blood and never left after she moved there to attend Appalachian State University (ASU). While at ASU, she majored in piano performance and music therapy and began to cultivate a love for accompanying and for collaborating with other musicians. This soon led her to earn a master’s degree in collaborative piano at the University of Tennessee, which she attended from 2006-2008.
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