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The Kennedy Center

Sixth Floor Trio



Biography

The Sixth Floor Trio is a chamber group dedicated to the creation and performance of music that furthers a dialogue between different musical communities and other artistic disciplines. Formed by graduates of the Curtis Institute of Music in 2008, the Trio has opened for (and collaborated with) Marvin Hamlisch, (Kennedy Center) in 2010, the Kravis Center (Palm Beach) in 2011, and performed concerts and community engagement for Astral Artists in Philadelphia. The Trio received a substantial grant in 2011 from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation to present “Random Acts of Culture” performances across the United States, and to develop a video project featuring folk music from around the world. Upcoming engagements include performances at World Cafe Live in Philadelphia and at the 2011 Central Vermont Chamber Music Festival, in addition to numerous other concerts around the country during their summer, fall, and winter residencies this season.

The Sixth Floor Trio’s vision places all musical traditions from around the world on one continuum as part of the same great musical language, and their mission is to seek to make connections between these varied musical styles in their repertoire. From bluegrass to Klezmer, classical, to jazz, ancient music to contemporary rock – they explore it all and bring its energy to the world. In addition, they strive to share their artistic passion and music-making with diverse audiences everywhere, from traditional concertgoers to those with acute needs or in remote places.

Teddy Abrams
conducts, composes, and performs as a clarinetist, pianist, and sometimes as a saxophonist. Currently, Mr. Abrams is the Conducting Fellow of the New World Symphony in Miami. He comes from San Francisco, where he began working with Michael Tilson Thomas at age 11. Mr. Abrams was the youngest conducting student ever accepted at both the Curtis Institute of Music and the Aspen Music Festival, and his unusual prior education included five years of community college (instead of middle school) and a Bachelor of music from the San Francisco Conservatory (instead of high school). Mr. Abrams has soloed with the San Francisco Symphony, performed with Menahem Pressler, Gilbert Kalish, John Adams, and Time for Three, and has played with the Philadelphia Orchestra. He has been appointed Resident Conductor of the MAV Symphony in Budapest for the 2011-2012 season, and has taught at dozens of schools throughout the United States as part of his mission to support music education and community engagement.

Harrison Hollingsworth
left Texas and his Western Swing roots to study with the legendary Bernard Garfield at Curtis in Philadelphia. Although he spent most of the next four years making bassoon reeds, he also developed a strong affinity for bluegrass music, and joined a local Philly band, Wissahickon Chicken Shack, on fiddle. Currently based in New York City as the principal bassoon of the NYC Ballet, as a soloist with Astral Artists, and a founding member of Reed5, Mr. Hollingsworth is also an accomplished conductor (master’s degree, Mannes College for Music), composer, and arranger. When he’s not rocking out on the bassoon or waving his arms at an orchestra, Mr. Hollingsworth writes songs, fiddles, and sings for the Union Street Preservation Society String Band, which just released its wildly popular debut album, Spring to Rust. As a member of the Sixth Floor Trio, Mr. Hollingsworth plays bassoon and violin and serves as the trio’s bluegrass arranger, chauffeur, and professional daredevil.

Johnny Teyssier
is currently Principal Clarinet of the Minnesota Opera Orchestra, and has performed as Principal Clarinet with the Rotterdam Philharmonic and Malmo Symphony. He began playing clarinet at the age of 11, attended the Interlochen Arts Academy, and at 17 was admitted to the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. He completed an Artist Diploma at the Colburn School in Los Angeles, studying with Yehuda Gilad. As an emerging soloist, Mr. Teyssier has played recitals throughout the United States and Europe, and has appeared with the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Hilton Head Symphony, the Curtis Symphony and the Interlochen Academy Orchestra. Mr. Teyssier has reinforced his ties to Europe: in Ireland as winner of the Ico Ardán Award from the Irish Chamber Orchestra, and in France as winner of the Juventus Prize.

Watch Past Performances

Video 3/17/2012: Sixth Floor Trio

The popular trio presents a program exploring the connection between folk and classical music. Part of The Music of Budapest, Prague, and Vienna.

Video 10/23/2011: Sixth Floor Trio

The chamber group, 2008 graduates of the Curtis Institute of Music, fuses music styles from bluegrass to klezmer, classical to jazz, and ancient music to contemporary rock.

sixth floor trio