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Residencies with ConTempus


ConTempus will perform pieces or excerpts of pieces from our repertoire, then discuss and analyze the music and the ensemble’s unique approach to performance. Questions to and from the audience will be addressed throughout the demonstration.


Members of Eighth Blackbird will listen to solo or small ensemble performances and offer comments and suggestions. Groups of any instrumentation playing music from any time period are welcome.

Chamber Ensemble Coaching

For residencies that last 4 days or more, it is possible to work with chamber ensembles again after the initial masterclass, provided they have had time to rehearse, as an ensemble, points discussed in the masterclass.

Open Rehearsal

Members of ConTempus will lead auditors through a public rehearsal of the ensemble’s current repertoire. Repertoire for the class will be chosen by ConTempus. Questions from the audience will be addressed during the rehearsal.


Discussion Session for Performers

ConTempus will discuss the business aspects of running a chamber music ensemble. Topics may include how to form and maintain a chamber music ensemble, how to communicate effectively in rehearsals and meetings, how to choose and prepare repertoire, and how to perform with conviction for an audience.


Discussion Session for Composers

ConTempus will discuss how to write for each instrument group (strings, winds, piano, percussion) and how to write for groups using mixed instrumentation. Other topics may include orchestration, commissioning, score organization, and meeting deadlines.


Collaborative Performances

The ensemble will rehearse with and prepare work(s) to be performed alongside a student ensemble. Available repertoire varies per season. These type of collaborations typically take several days prior to a performance to accomplish depending on the ability level of collaborators and repertoire chosen.

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