The Colorado Chamber Players performs concerts, educational programs, and broadcasts, presenting original and collaborative chamber music and multi-disciplinary works. The CCP provides access to great music, thus bringing beauty into people's lives.
The CCP began as a string trio in 1993, and will celebrate its 28th season "Transformations" in 2021-22 as an award-winning mixed ensemble of 11 distinguished musicians (string 4tet, bass, oboe, viola d'amore, clarinet, piano, harp, and voice). The CCP looks forward to performing live with August Ramos, Double Bass virtuoso, in "We Go Lower" Oct. 22 and 24; and presenting "Misshapen Pearl" in November 2021 in a virtual format, with music of three women composers of the baroque. Soprano Kathryn Radakovich performs music of Jessie Montgomery and Brahms with the CCP in February 2022. CCP concerts will be a combination of live and virtual events this season.
The CCP will debut an outreach program in spring 2022, dedicated to the life and music of Joseph de Bologne, a mixed race classical violinist and composer, son of a French nobleman and an African slave, and born in Guadaloupe. Bologne moved to Paris at age 11, and was successful to the point where his race prevented him from progressing further. He was a friend and colleague of Mozart.
The CCP only performed formal concerts for its first several seasons. As the group evolved over time, outreach and education concerts became a priority. In 2020, 1/3 of the 40+ annual concerts in Colorado will consist of outreach concerts to schools, senior centers, and community centers, mostly virtually. Part of the CCP's mission to "provide access to great music, thus bringing beauty into people's lives". The preceding goal was the impetus for a high percentage of outreach concerts, so that people from all walks of life have access to great chamber music.
The CCP has toured the USA, Spain & Brazil; their CD, "Uplifting Discoveries from a Generation Lost", available from Centaur Recordings, was recently included in the Denver Czechpoint Festival. The CCP was a featured ensemble in a concert for the Biennial of the Americas in 2010, and performed for the 2011 Rex Morgan Awards at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House. The CCP has performed for over a decade at the Boulder Public Library. The group engaged in strategic planning 2009-2011 with Richard Male and Associates.
Adolphe's "The Tiger's Ear: Listening to Abstract Expressionist Painting", was premiered and recorded in Colorado by the CCP in 2007-08, and was recently revived for a June 2012 Denver performance. The Tiger's Ear project received a 2-page feature article in the Denver Post in 2007. The CCP performed with cellist Lynn Harrell in April 2018, and with world-renowned pianist Jeffrey Kahane in 2008 in an eclectic program of Hindemith & Shostakovich.
The CCP received the sole 2006 & 2008 Creativity Awards from the Adams County SCFD & received awards from the Argosy Fund for Contemporary Music, Meet the Composer & the Copland Performing Fund 2008-2011.
In 2008-09, the ensemble was awarded Chamber Music America's (CMA) prestigious Residency Award for their work at Children's Hospital. Other significant grants received by the CCP include the National Endowment for the Arts, Colorado Council, Denver Foundation, Janus & Xcel Energy Foundations. In 2009, the CCP was one of a select few in Colorado to be awarded an arts stimulus fund grant from the NEA, the ARRA & DOCA. It has been awarded four Meet the Composer awards to host composers in Denver.
The CCP served as ensemble-in-residence at the Mizel Arts Center from 1996-2006; it served in the same capacity with the Denver Young Artists Orchestra from 2000-06. The group records at Colorado Public Radio studios 6-8 times per season, with delayed radio broadcasts reaching 25,000 listeners in the Rocky Mountain region with each broadcast. (see attached info on the CCP at Colorado Public Radio under work samples)
"Sumptuous, light-as-air ensemble work….exceptional concert and sterling performances from the Colorado Chamber Players."
-Marc Shulgold, the scen3.org, 2018
Opus Colorado wrote in 2011: "CCP truly excelled in the performance" (see attached 2011-12 reviews in work samples). "The Rocky Mountain News wrote: "The CCP takes the road less-traveled, with fascinating programs".
Westword wrote of Einstein's Mozart: "A hint of the infinite, with elegant, evocative melodies."
World Dance Review wrote of the CCP's 2009 "L'Amour" with David Taylor: "The CCP was stunning...often electrifying"
Boulder Camera wrote "Magnificent!" of the CCP's Messiaen "Quartet for the End of Time" in January 2008.
The CCP champions new music, and commissions new works on a regular basis. San Francisco based composer Mark Fish is writing a commission for the CCP in 2022. A major commission by Grammy winner Gabriela Lena Frank was premiered in 2011. Eight pieces have been premiered by the CCP at the Butterfly Pavilion, by Katrina Wreede, David Waldman, Ben Tomkins and Scott Higgins.
Audience surveys and administrators 2019- 2021:
1) "The Colorado Chamber Players is a life-changing organization, and our students love them!" -Brandon Joseph, Aspen Country Day School.
2)"I really enjoyed your performance, the playing, the script, acting, everything. At the beginning, when you played the 5th softly, like perhaps Beethoven heard it, I broke down in tears. It was also great that "Tinnitus Trill" got a mention in the credits, too!"
3) "As we celebrate the season of Thanksgiving, the Colorado Chamber Players came first to my mind. Children's Hospital is so grateful for the concerts for our community!" -Kathleen McBride, Volunteer Services Coordinator
4) "Thank you, Barbara. The performance was very moving, and again seeing you all make music simply made me want to weep. Heartfelt wishes for a good (better) new year."
5) "I love having these concerts at our church, at a very reasonable price & easy to get to. Many many thanks for treating us to great music."
6) "The musicians really seemed to enjoy playing, playing together, and playing for a live audience (after the covid hiatus). That was really nice. Many thanks to Sarah and family for providing the venue - having it outside was excellent. Acoustics were different from inside - with the wall of the house behind them, and the grass & trees to absorb any echo, the sound was great. With the sun lighting the clouds over the house as it set, I don't know what else anyone might ask for."
7) "Thanks for bringing cellist Lynn Harrell to Denver- what a fantastic experience seeing him teach and perform!"
"Here again, the ensemble delivered the goods. The two hair-raising codas in the opening and closing movements proved as exciting as anything delivered at chamber-music concerts this season, inspiring a standing ovation"
"This program once again reminded us of the value of this adventurous floating organization, which, under Hamilton's leadership, has served up rare and unusual repertory of all shapes and sizes for 21 years - a distinction clearly evident in the announcement of offerings for next season, titled "A Year of Shostakovich." Can't wait!"
-Marc Shulgold, thescen3.org, May 2015
"The mix of textures and sounds achieved made for a fascinating look at a single instrument and its possibilities, with the intense support of CCP's artists and artistry....otherworldly effect....fantastically evocative. The CCP and Bermel played with incredible finesse and expression throughout (Brahms Quintet), clearly drawing the chromatic richness of this piece while maintaining a sense of hushed urgency"
-Ruth Carver, thescen3.org, May 2014
"The CCP played "Art of the Fugue"... with a sense of mystery. The group played...with tender lyricism... The duo movements stole the show!"
-Brad Turner, Colorado Public Radio, June 2014
"Absolutely sensational....Schubert Cello Quintet.... and they certainly deserved the audience response of a standing ovation. The precision of this group and their mutual agreement in interpretation always astounds me.... They imbued the fourth movement of this work with a kind of emotional urgency that I have always thought that Schubert must have experienced as he was writing the last few works of his life."
-Robin McNeil, thescen3.org, February 2014
"The CCP truly excelled in the performance of these pieces... I was immediately reminded of the old Budapest Quartet which I grew up listening to in my younger days. The CCP's playing was incredibly liquid and extremely refined." - Robin McNeil, Opus Colorado, October 2011
"Magnificently played Messiaen!"
- Wes Blomster, Boulder Daily Camera, February, 2008
- Glenn Giffen, Denver Post, 2006
The Chamber Players...tend to stay away from the road most traveled. For music lovers with a taste for adventure, this is welcome news...Their thought-provoking programming...sets the CCP apart from other chamber groups
- Marc Shulgold, Rocky Mountain News, November, 2000