MUSIC AT MoCA SEASON PASS
Includes all 13 concerts. All concerts start at 7 p.m.
PERFORMERS IN MUSIC AT MoCA SEASON PASS INCLUDE:
April 30, 2021
We’re kicking off the concert series with a MoCA first!
Matt Nakoa is an award-winning songwriter, singer, and multi-instrumentalist. A modern troubadour, he makes his home on the highways and concert stages of America and appears regularly with folk music icon Tom Rush. The Boston Globe says of Nakoa, “Between his piano chops and heartfelt originals on guitar, he drops jaws.”
Born on a small goat farm in New York State, Nakoa trained to be a concert pianist before accepting a scholarship to Berklee College of Music as a vocalist. He developed his dramatic songwriting style with his college art-rock band, The Fens, and when the band dissolved, he landed in NYC. It was in Manhattanʼs all-night piano bars that Matt developed an uncanny ability to command the attention of any audience.
2012 and 2014 saw the release of his first solo albums, garnering multiple songwriting awards, including a win at Kerrville Folk Festivalʼs new folk competition. Nakoaʼs newest album, Casting Shadows, is a spellbinding blend of pop, soul, and classical influences and tells a story of childhood dreams crashing headlong into a grownup reality. The Ark of Music magazine proclaims, “What we have here is a truly encouraging sign of what pop could once again become …”
“On the ivories, (think of) a hot-handed phenom who can go from Chopin to beer-drenched honkytonk in one set …On guitar, a Jack Johnson-esque singer-songwriter…between his piano chops, charismatic stage presence, and heartfelt originals on guitar…he drops jaws.” – The Boston Globe
Isaiah J. Thompson
Jazz at Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Series
May 14, 2021
Isaiah J. Thompson is a jazz pianist, bandleader and composer from West Orange, New Jersey. He began studying at The Calderone School of Music at an early age, and soon after continued his studies with Jazz House Kids and NJPAC Jazz For Teens. He was later admitted to The Juilliard School at the age of 18, and graduated with his B.M. in 2019 and his M.M. in 2020.
Isaiah has performed with major artists, including Ron Carter, John Pizzarelli, Christian McBride, Steve Turre and Buster Williams. His recording debut was featured on Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Blue Engine Records’ Handful of Keys album with the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis, and his debut album as a leader, Isaiah J. Thompson Plays the Music of Buddy Montgomery, was released in 2020.
He worked on the Golden Globe nominated soundtrack for Motherless Brooklyn, was named a Steinway Artist and has been awarded accolades including, the 2018 Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Award, and second place in the 2018 Thelonious Monk (now Herbie Hancock) Institute of Jazz International Piano Competition. Isaiah believes that artistry is a direct channel into the mind and soul of an artist, and as such, feels that it is important to not lose sight of one’s individuality or that of others. As a performer, he tries to emit a feeling of joy and convey his personal experiences through the music, and through his everlasting love of jazz.
The Alexa Tarantino Quartet
Jazz at Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Series
May 28, 2021
“[Alexa is] a one-woman wrecking crew, […] an indomitable force for expression, education, and absolute excellence.” – Wynton Marsalis, Managing and Artist Director, Jazz at Lincoln Center
Alexa Tarantino is an award-winning, vibrant, young jazz saxophonist, woodwind doubler, composer, and educator. Her performance at MoCA Westport in 2020 was a highlight of the summer season and we are thrilled to have her back for an encore performance.
Alexa’s “lovely, ardent way of improvising,” and “sharply plotted but gracefully unencumbered straight-ahead jazz [compositions]” (The New York Times) establish her individual voice which shines through as a dynamic performer and educator. Tarantino was named one of the “Top 5 Alto Saxophonists of 2019” by the JazzTimes Critics’ Poll and nominated as a “Rising Star – Alto Saxophone” by Downbeat Magazine’s 2020 Critics’ Poll.
Tarantino is currently on faculty for Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Youth Programs (High School Jazz Academy, Let Freedom Swing/Jazz for Young People) and represents the organization as a Clinician and Educator for various schools, festivals, and workshops. She holds a Master’s degree in Jazz Studies from The Juilliard School and Bachelor’s degrees in Jazz Saxophone Performance and Music Education from the Eastman School of Music. Alexa is Founder and Director of the Rockport Jazz Workshop in Rockport, Massachusetts and Co-Founder of A Step Ahead Jazz with pianist Steven Feifke.
Alexa Tarantino is a Vandoren Artist and Yamaha Performing Artist.
Jocelyn and Chris
June 11, 2021
With vocal comparisons to Janis Joplin and Grace Slick and guitar work likened to Jimi Hendrix and David Gilmour, Jocelyn & Chris and their band have charted three consecutive radio singles in the Billboard AAA Top 40, taken two records to #1 on the Jambands Top 30 Album Chart, and appeared nationally on NBC’s Today Show.
The siblings, both recent graduates of Harvard University, have balanced college with performances coast to coast and recordings featuring special guests Cory Wong of Vulfpeck, G. Love, and Gov’t Mule’s Danny Louis. They’ve been featured at Sundance, Summerfest, SXSW, and on the main stage at Mountain Jam Music Festival, to name just a few, and garnered coverage from Baeble, Huffington Post, NowThis, Paste Magazine, Daily Mail, Cheddar TV, People, Jam in the Van, Hollywood Reporter, and numerous others. Their performances are a perfect blend of high-energy AAA rock and incredible audience engagement anchored by Jocelyn’s astonishing vocals.
Alessio Bax and Lucille Chung
June 25, 2021
Alessio Bax and Lucille Chung
Pianist Alessio Bax is a First Prize winner at both the Leeds and Hamamatsu International Piano Competitions, and the recipient of a 2009 Avery Fisher Career Grant. He has appeared with more than 100 orchestras, including the London Philharmonic, Royal Philharmonic, Boston Symphony, Dallas Symphony, Houston Symphony, Japan’s NHK Symphony, St. Petersburg Philharmonic, and City of Birmingham Symphony. In summer 2017 he launched a three-season appointment as artistic director of Tuscany’s Incontri in Terra di Siena festival, having also appeared at such festivals as Music@Menlo, the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, Switzerland’s Verbier Festival, Norway’s Risør Festival, Germany’s Klavier-Festival Ruhr and Beethovenfest, and England’s Aldeburgh Festival, Bath Festival, and International Piano Series. An accomplished chamber musician, he regularly collaborates with his wife, pianist Lucille Chung, superstar violinist Joshua Bell, Berlin Philharmonic principals Daishin Kashimoto and Emmanuel Pahud, and the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, where he is an alum of The Bowers Program.
Canadian pianist Lucille Chung made her debut at the age of ten with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra and went on tour with Charles Dutoit in Asia. She has performed with over 65 leading orchestras including The Philadelphia Orchestra, Moscow Virtuosi, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Israel Chamber Orchestra, Seoul Philharmonic, Staatskapelle Weimar, Dallas Symphony, and has appeared with conductors such as Penderecki, Spivakov, Nézet-Séguin, Petrenko, and Dutoit. She has given solo recitals in over 35 countries in venues including New York’s Weill Hall and Lincoln Center, Washington’s Kennedy Center, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Wigmore Hall in London, and Madrid’s Auditorio Nacional. Festival appearances include the Verbier, Bard, Music@Menlo, and Santander festivals. She and her husband, pianist Alessio Bax, live in New York City with their daughter Mila and are co-artistic directors of the Joaquín Achúcarro Foundation.
July 9, 2021
Oshima Brothers’ magnetic sibling sound and contagious joy result from a lifetime of making music together. Raised in a musical family in rural Maine, the brothers have honed a harmony-rich blend of contemporary folk and acoustic pop. On stage, Sean and Jamie create a full and complex sound with dynamic vocals, electric and acoustic guitars, octave bass, loops, and percussion.
The Oshima Brothers currently have two albums to their credit, producing their self-titled debut in 2016, followed by the five-track EP Under The Same Stars in 2019. The brothers write, record and produce all of their music and videos mostly in their home studio in Maine. The latest video collection includes the five music videos that accompany each track of Under The Same Stars. NPR’s “Heavy Rotation” playlist recently featured their song “Ellie” as its lead track. Within a month of its release, Under The Same Stars has garnered hundreds of thousands of streams from Spotify, Apple Music and Amazon. The brothers live together in Maine but spend most of their time on the road performing, writing, videoing, and dancing.
Horszowski Trio and Amadi Azikiwe
July 16, 2021
The Horszowski Trio
Giving performances that are “lithe, persuasive” (The New York Times), “eloquent and enthralling” (The Boston Globe), and described as “the most compelling American group to come on the scene” (The New Yorker), the Horszowski Trio has quickly become a vital force in the international chamber music world. Since their debut performance in New York City in 2011, they have toured extensively throughout North America, Europe, the Far East, and India, traversing the extensive oeuvre of traditional piano trio repertoire and introducing audiences to new music that they have commissioned and premiered.
In March 2019, the Horszowski Trio made its London debut in a sold-out concert presented by Wigmore Hall. In the same season, they also appeared at the 92nd Street Y in New York City; the Kimmel Center in Philadelphia; Schubert Club in Saint Paul, Minnesota; Spivey Hall in Atlanta; Bowdoin Music Festival in Maine; UCLA in Los Angeles; Dresden’s Moritzburg Festival (Germany); and venues in Boston, San Francisco, Canada, and Japan, among others. In addition, they released a recording of the complete piano trios by Robert Schumann on AVIE Records, receiving tremendous acclaim: “great care and affection” (BBC Radio); “intoxicating” (Gramophone); “exciting and deeply felt” (Strings); “fresh, supple and fantastic” (The Strad).
Catalyst String Quartet
August 6, 2021
Hailed by The New York Times at its Carnegie Hall debut as “invariably energetic and finely burnished… playing with earthy vigor,” the Grammy Award-winning Catalyst Quartet was founded by the internationally acclaimed Sphinx Organization in 2010. The ensemble (Karla Donehew Perez, violin; Abi Fayette, violin; Paul Laraia, viola; and Karlos Rodriguez, cello) believes in the unity that can be achieved through music and imagines their programs and projects with this in mind, redefining and reimagining the classical music experience.
The Samara Joy Ensemble
Jazz at Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Series
August 20, 2021
With a voice as smooth as velvet, Samara Joy’s star seems to rise with each performance. Following her winning the 2019 Sarah Vaughan International Jazz Vocal Competition, she is currently recording her debut recording, which will feature Samara backed by the Pasquale Grasso Trio.
Growing up in New York, music was a pervasive presence, due to the inspiration of her paternal grandparents, Elder Goldwire and Ruth McLendon, who led the well-known Philadelphia-based gospel group, The Savettes. Her father toured with the renowned Gospel artist Andrae Crouch, and her home was filled with the sounds of not only her father’s songs and songwriting process, but the inspiration of many Gospel and R&B artists, including Stevie Wonder, Lalah Hathaway, George Duke, Musiq Soulchild, Kim Burrell, Commissioned, and many others.
Samara’s first exposure to jazz was while attending Fordham High School for the Arts, where she performed regularly with the jazz band, eventually winning Best Vocalist at JALC’s Essentially Ellington competition.
Not yet 21 years old, Samara has already performed in many of the great jazz venues in NYC, including Dizzy’s Club Coca Cola, The Blue Note, and Mezzrow, in addition to working with jazz greats such as Christian McBride, Pasquale Grasso, Kirk Lightsey, Cyrus Chestnut, and NEA Jazz Master Dr. Barry Harris.
As she begins work on her debut recording (to be released in the spring of 2021), Samara Joy looks forward to sharing her passionate love for jazz as a uniting force in the years to come.
The Simon Mulligan Trio
September 3, 2021
British pianist Simon Mulligan has been described by The Times of London as “the most abundantly gifted of pianists,” by Yehudi Menuhin as “one of the finest pianists I have ever had the pleasure of performing with” and by Herbie Hancock as “phenomenal.” Following his début with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Simon has performed and recorded with the BBC Symphony, Detroit Symphony (under Slatkin), English Symphony Orchestra (Boughton), Warsaw Sinfonia (Menuhin), Hong Kong Philharmonic (Atherton), Malaysian Philharmonic, and the Royal National Scottish Orchestra (Serebrier) to name a few.
Escher String Quartet
September 10, 2021
October 8, 2021
When you hear Marielle Kraft’s music or experience her candid live shows, you feel as though you already know her. The Nashville-based indie pop singer/songwriter, originally from Rhode Island, displays craftsmanship beyond her years, evident through her use of salient detail, raw emotion, and poignant word choice to describe moments “exactly as they feel.”
In spring 2018, she was crowned Grand Champion of the Mid-Atlantic Singer-Songwriter Competition, and the following June she delivered a Tedx Talk at Firefly 2018, discussing the importance of honesty rooted in her songwriting process.
Marielle Kraft’s debut studio EP, The Deep End, officially released on July 12th, 2019, is described by The Music Mermaid as “song after song of mini pop addictions.” In February 2020, Marielle Kraft co-released an “anthemic” and “heart-filled” single with Joshua Howard entitled “In It Together,” which has quickly gained traction across platforms.
Marielle Kraft has shared stages with names as big as Jon McLaughlin, Ava Max, and Betty Who. Her “winning personality,” “genuine connection,” and “gift for storytelling” on stage have fueled the ever-growing crowds at each of her shows, with no signs of slowing down.
“Marielle’s songs tap into young women and millennials’ romantic angst and euphoria in a way that feels flavored by Alanis Morissette and Taylor Swift.” – Cheryl Squandrito, Philadelphia Inquirer
October 15, 2021
The tried and true band The Figgs, have a worldwide fan base, a hearty discography, and has toured and recorded several times with the legendary Graham Parker.
The tried and true band The Figgs, have a worldwide fan base, a hearty discography, and have toured and recorded several times with the legendary Graham Parker. Originally known as The Sonic Undertones, their output includes thirteen studio albums and multiple EPs and singles.
The Figgs (Mike Gent, Pete Donnelly and Pete Hayes) have been playing together since the trio was in high school in Saratoga Springs, N.Y.
Since the rock outfit’s inception in 1987 the band has spent the better part of the past 25 years touring, recording and working on a variety of acclaimed side projects.
“For more than two decades, the high-energy band has delivered a dance-inducing variety of fast-paced pop rock, complete with catchy hooks and hip-shaking bass lines.”