Join Grammy Award-winning quartet Third Coast Percussion as it performs a new work created by four-time Oscar nominee and renowned film composer Danny Elfman. The Moss Arts Center presents a livestream performance of Elfman's new work, “Percussion Quartet,” along with exclusive, never-before-seen interview footage with the composer, and a live question-and-answer session with the members of Third Coast Percussion.

The free online event, “Digital Third Coast Percussion: Danny Elfman,” goes live at 8 p.m. on Friday, May 29, and can be accessed on the Moss Arts Center website.

Third Coast Percussion, an artist-run quartet of professionally trained percussionists, will perform “Percussion Quartet” live. A benefit of its decision to shelter as an ensemble since March, Third Coast will perform together in its state-of-the-art performance studio.

Composed specifically for the ensemble, Third Coast premiered “Percussion Quartet” in October 2019 at Philip Glass’s Days and Nights Festival. This virtuosic and elegant piece is the latest work from Elfman, one of the world’s most versatile and accomplished film composers. The livestream event also includes the premiere of exclusive interview footage with the composer.

Elfman has scored more than 100 films over the course of his 30-year career, beginning with Tim Burton’s “Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure.” He has received Oscar nominations for his scores for the films “Milk,” “Good Will Hunting,” “Big Fish,” and “Men in Black.” In addition to his film work, Elfman wrote the iconic theme music for the television series “The Simpsons” and “Desperate Housewives.” 

Members of Third Coast Percussion will be available for a live question-and-answer session, taking questions submitted electronically from viewers. A direct connection with the audience is at the core of all of Third Coast Percussion’s work, whether the musicians are speaking about a new piece of music or inviting the audience to play along in a concert or educational performance.

“It’s exciting to join such wildly talented performers for the first of what we hope will be multiple chances to engage with music virtually,” said Margaret Lawrence, director of programming for the Moss Arts Center. “Third Coast Percussion is driven by curiosity and a passion to share wonderful music with all.”

Traversing the depth and breadth of musical possibilities in the world of percussion, the ensemble brings an energetic and unique approach to music. The quartet has put its stamp on iconic percussion works by John Cage and Steve Reich, and Third Coast has also created first recordings of commissioned works by Philip Glass, Augusta Read Thomas, Devonté Hynes, Gavin Bryars, Donnacha Dennehy, David T. Little, and Ted Hearne, in addition to recordings of the ensemble’s own compositions. In 2017 the ensemble won a Grammy for Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance for its recording of Steve Reich’s works for percussion. 

This event is presented with lead support from Stanford Live and additional support from the Moss Arts Center at Virginia Tech and Denison University.

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