Hermitage Artist Retreat Presents Brothers in Song With Violist Ralph Farris and Flutist Robert Mirabal

And Poetry by Aimee Nezhukumatathil 

Friday, August 3, 7:15 p.m., on the beach at the Hermitage

French Classical/Contemporary Concert

With Flutist Brandon Patrick George and Classical Guitarist Jordan Dodson

Thursday, August 16, 5 p.m., at Alfstad & Contemporary


(Sarasota County) The Hermitage Artist Retreat presents two programs in August. The first, “Brothers in Song,” features longtime collaborators/composers Ralph Farris (strings, voice, percussion) and Robert Mirabal (Native American flutes, voice, percussion) performing a Native American-themed theatrical piece that will soon move to workshop. During their performance, the two will share tales and tunes from their years of working together. The evening will begin with a collaboration with fellow Hermitage artist, poet Aimee Nezhukumatathil, and will close with a sunset meditation. This free event is Friday, August 3, 7:15 p.m., on the beach at the Hermitage, 6660 Manasota Key Road in Englewood. Guests should bring beach chairs and are welcome to bring snacks and refreshments. Reservations are strongly suggested in case the event is moved indoors where space is limited. Reservations are through email only to reservations@hermitageartistretreat.org.

The second event features flutist Brandon Patrick George and classical guitarist Jordan Dodson in a concert highlighting French music from three different time periods: baroque, romantic, and contemporary. The pieces include Elizabeth de la Guerre’s “Sonata in D minor,” Roland Dyens’ “Traveling Sonata,” and a work by Claude Debussy arranged by Brandon George and Jordan Dodson. This free event is Thursday, August 16, 5 p.m. at Alfstad& Contemporary, 1419 5th Street, Sarasota. Space is limited; reservations are strongly suggested. Reservations are through email only to reservations@hermitageartistretreat.org.

“Usually when we hear music, the composer is a thousand miles or a few centuries away,” says Patricia Caswell, co-founder and program director of the Hermitage. “Come engage with these living composers. Their music is accessible and likable, even to people who are not yet fans of ‘new music.’ You might meet the next Mozart!”

Multi-instrumentalist, composer, arranger, producer and conductor Ralph Farris has collaborated with a wide-range of luminaries, including Todd Rundgren, Paul McCartney, Ensemble Modern, Bang On A Can, and Yo-Yo Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble. A founding artistic director of the genre-bending string quartet ETHEL, he has shared the stage with such talents as Leonard Bernstein, Paul Simon, Pete Townsend, Seiji Ozawa, John Williams, David Byrne, and Lou Reed. Ferris also served as the music director of the Roger Daltrey Band and was an original company member of Disney’s “The Lion King.” For more information, visit www.ralphfarris.com.

Robert Mirabal is a musician, composer, painter, master craftsman, poet, actor, screenwriter, horseman and farmer. He is the author of “A Skeleton of a Bridge,” a book of poetry, prose, and short stories, and “Running Alone in Photographs,” a memoir that opens a window to an experience of life in the Pueblo. A two-time NAMA Native American Artist of the Year, three-time NAMA Songwriter of the Year, and two-time GRAMMY® winner, Mirabal presents an inspired contemporary view of American Indian life and ceremony. As a theatrical performer, he’s portrayed Tony Lujan in the movie “Georgia O’Keeffe,” and his 2002 PBS special, “Music from a Painted Cave,” has been praised as unsurpassed in Native American theatrical expression. Mirabel is currently touring in support of “The River,” a NAMA-nominated album, recorded in collaboration with ETHEL.

Lauded for his “stellar” and “exemplary” (Gramophone Magazine) performances, Brandon Patrick George has appeared as a soloist and chamber artist throughout the United States, France, Italy, and Brazil. An avid chamber musician, he has collaborated with members of Eighth Blackbird, the New York Philharmonic, and the Jasper String Quartet. George’s debut album, featuring works by Aho, Bach, Boulez, and Prokofiev, will be released by Haenssler Classics this summer. For more information, visit www.brandonpatrickgeorge.com.

Performance Today describes classical guitarist Jordan Dodson as “one of the top young guitarists of his generation.” An advocate for contemporary music, Dodson has commissioned and premiered dozens of pieces internationally, including works by Lewis Nielson, Elliot Cole, Robert Sirota, and Gabriella Smith. He performs in several New York City chamber ensembles and recently collaborated with such acclaimed artists as the International Contemporary Ensemble, Anne-Marie McDermott, and Ransom Wilson. He can be heard on the album “Subject” on Tzadik Records. For more information, visit www.jordandodson.net.


About the Hermitage Artist Retreat:

The Hermitage is a not-for-profit artist retreat located at 6660 Manasota Key Road in Englewood, Florida. It invites accomplished painters, sculptors, writers, playwrights, poets, composers and other artists from all over the world for residencies on its beachfront historic campus. Artists are asked to interact with the community during their stay and, as a result, Hermitage artists touch thousands of Gulf Coast community residents with unique and inspiring programs each year. Hermitage programs are supported, in part, by philanthropist Gerri Aaron; by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts; by Sarasota County Tourist Development Tax Revenues; and by the Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs, the Florida Council of Arts and Culture and the State of Florida (Section 286.25 Florida Statutes). In addition, the Hermitage awards and administers the prestigious Greenfield Prize, an annual $30,000 commission for a new work of art, rotating among visual art, music and drama. The Hermitage also partners with the Aspen Music Festival and School to award the annual Hermitage Prize to a composition student during the Festival. For more information about The Hermitage Artist Retreat, call 941-475-2098, Ext. 5, or visit the website at www.HermitageArtistRetreat.org.