Roomful Of Teeth Collaborates With Playground Ensemble On New Music

<p>(Photo: CPR/Irvin Coffee)</p>
<p>Vocal octet Roomful of Teeth warms up in the CPR Performance Studio.</p>

The concert on Wednesday includes a new piece by Caroline Shaw, the Pulitzer Prize-winning composer who sings in the group.

Denver's Playground Ensemble, which promotes contemporary classical music, co-commissioned the piece. Five Playground Ensemble musicians will join Roomful of Teeth onstage for the concert.

Conrad Kehn, the director and founder of Playground Ensemble, said the co-commission gave his group an unusual way to celebrate its 10th anniversary.

"I don’t think Denver gets the credit it deserves for its music community, and for its new music community," Kehn says. "We wanted to do something that was going to draw national eyes to Denver. And so we wanted to commission a composer with a national reputation. To find a composer as young and now and vibrant as Caroline Shaw, I think we’ve achieved what we’re aiming for.”

Get a taste of Roomful of Teeth in the video above, filmed during a 2015 session in the CPR Performance Studio.

Here's an excerpt of a moving piece Playground Ensemble performed by Denver composer Loretta Notareschi. The group's string quartet debuted the piece in early 2015:

Playground Ensemble is collecting score submissions for its upcoming Colorado Composers Concert, including music written by K-12 students, through Friday. (UPDATE: Playground Ensemble has extended the deadline to submit a score. The new deadline is Jan. 20.)