Concert Programs


New works by Philip Glass, Devonté Hynes, and more

Photo by Saverio Truglia

Features music from the 2020 GRAMMY® Award Nominated album Perpetulum

“An inspirational sense of fun and curiosity”
 -Minnesota Star-Tribune

“Commandingly elegant”
 -New York Times

A Third Coast Percussion performance is a one-of-a-kind event. The ensemble reinvents the classical music experience every night with music that is as inviting as it is unexpected. With repertoire ranging from living legend Philip Glass to contemporary music master Augusta Read Thomas to pop polymath Devonté Hynes (AKA Blood Orange), live camera projections and video art, and instruments from around the world, this is an evening of music that will thrill both first time concert-goers and contemporary music super fans alike.

Read a feature article
about Third Coast Percussion’s concerts, residencies, commissions, and other activities from The Chicago Reader.

Read the review from the world premiere of Perpetulum by Philip Glass.

DEVONTÉ HYNES Perfectly Voiceless
ROBERT DILLON Ordering-Instincts
DAVID SKIDMORE Torched and Wrecked

w/ Movement Art Is

Photo by Michael Cobarrubia

“MAI advocates for social change while expressing how vital dance can be”
 -The Atlantic

“[Third Coast Percussion] play as if they’re a single, eight-armed organism”
 -New York Times

This evening-length project celebrates a dynamic artistic collaboration through the blending of street dance and percussion ensemble. Choreography by Movement Art Is (co-founded by Lil Buck and Jon Boogz) will feature alongside new music composed for Grammy Award-winners Third Coast Percussion by Jlin and Tyondai Braxton, as well as Third Coast Percussion’s critically acclaimed arrangements of Philip Glass’s Aguas da Amazonia.

TOURING COMPANY: TCP (4 percussionists) will be joined on stage by 2 dancers, hand-picked by MAI, specializing in the movement styles championed by the choreographers. One additional production support person may tour with the project to call light and audio cues.

PRODUCTION: The project is being designed for a variety of performance venues, from concert halls to proscenium-stage theaters. The project is also suitable to be presented in the center of a performance space, with seating surrounding the stage. Minimum stage size 20’ wide by 24’ long by 15’ high.

Currently seeking partners to co-commission the work.

General availability beginning Fall 2020.

Archetypes w/ Sergio and Clarice Assad

12 New Works Exploring Stories That Connect Us All

This project explores the universal symbolic archetypes that appear in stories, legends, and myths throughout the world. Archetypes bind all of us together through our shared connection to these fundamental aspects of the human experience. In storytelling, an archetype can be a character, a setting, a theme, or it can even be a particular outcome. This may explain how stories that originate from vastly different cultures across the globe can, at their core, so closely resemble one another.

Expressing themselves through guitar, voice, piano, and a battery of percussion instruments, the ensemble draws inspiration from these foundational aspects of the human experience, as well as an array of musical traditions, taking the audience on a far-reaching musical journey grounded in familiar stories.

Paddle to the Sea

A multimedia journey to the open sea

Photo by Philip D. Lanum

“Arresting and enjoyable”
– Scott Cantrell, Dallas Morning News

“Third Coast Percussion’s acutely sensitive approach to sound yields a work that glides effortlessly and subtly between animated rhythmic sections and moments of serene, tranquil reflection.”
– Pwyll ap Siôn, Gramophone

Click here to check out the album.

The classic children’s book and Academy Award-nominated film, Paddle to the Sea, is the focus of a new project that looks at our relationship to the bodies of water that connect our lives. Third Coast Percussion composed a new score to be performed live with the film, which tells the story of a Native Canadian boy who carves a wooden figure called Paddle-to-the-Sea and sets him on a journey through all five Great Lakes, the St. Lawrence River, and finally to the Atlantic Ocean.

Existing works inspired by impressions of water and the natural world will weave in and out of the original film and new music, including composers Philip Glass and Jacob Druckman and the traditional music of the Shona people of Zimbabwe. The performance will flow together as a seamless whole, with Third Coast Percussion using the existing music as a jumping-off point for the new music they compose.

Paddle to the Sea underscores the geographic, economic, and cultural connections in our shared waterways, and it also asks us to consider the human impact on the waters that help us transport our goods, provide our electrical power, bathe ourselves, cook our food, and quench our thirst. This project will ask those same questions through live performance and residency activities.

Contact Liz Pesnel from Third Coast Percussion for more information: [email protected]

JACOB DRUCKMAN Reflections on the Nature of Water

The Bell Ringers

A new musical experience that brings communities together

Click here to read the review from the world premiere in Chicago.

Composer and arts educator Danny Clay and Third Coast Percussion are teaming up to create a new evening-length work that will invite participation from performers of a wide range of experience levels—from professionals to novices. The piece will be performed in a public location with the audience moving freely throughout the performance space, and draw influence from Clay’s use of the element of “play” and community-building in his works.

This work builds on several community music-making projects TCP has led in the past, include Inuksuit by John Luther Adams and In C by Terry Riley.

The ensemble’s goal in commissioning this new work is to build a project from the outset that addresses its main goals in community music-making:

  • Inclusion of as many participants as possible with musical material that matches each players’ level of experience and appetite for challenge.
  • A beautiful, fun, powerful piece of music that speaks to a wide range of audience members.
  • A fun and inviting experience for both performers and audience.

The Bell Ringers was commissioned by Third Coast Percussion with support from The Maxine and Stuart Frankel Foundation, the Meany Center for the Performing Arts at the University of Washington, the Julian Family Foundation, The Elizabeth F. Cheney Foundation, and the Third Coast Percussion New Works Fund. This project is supported in part by the National Endowment for The Arts.

Middle Western (working title)

A new collaboration between Manual Cinema and TCP

Middle Western is designed as a concert with live visuals—with music composed and shadow puppetry/ live visuals created by Emmy award-winning multimedia company Manual Cinema, and performed by GRAMMY award-winning percussion quartet Third Coast Percussion (both Chicago based organizations).

The organizing structure of the piece is a collection of short stories —both narrative and non-narrative shorts of varying lengths, subject matters, and points of view—all related to the American Midwest, but with universal themes.

Migration and adaptation, at the center of so much of the Midwest’s history, will be major thematic motifs, represented by a range of stories, from glacial melt to the Great Migration to Great Lakes invasive species.

As North America warms in the coming century, the Midwest’s relatively temperate climate and access to the largest fresh water system on the planet make it a likely candidate for what could be the largest climate related mass migration the continent has ever seen.


The Middle Western team is actively seeking co-commissioning support, workshopping partners, and presenters. We aim to premiere the piece in summer or fall 2021, and it will be ready to tour in the 21/22 season. All inquiries should be directed to:

Elsie Management
Laura Colby, Director
[email protected]
TEL: +1 718 797 4577