With style and grace, Calico Winds is taking wind music to the forefront of the chamber music world by artfully reinventing the conventional wind quintet.
They chose the name “Calico” to reflect the many colors and textures offered by the instruments of their ensemble. The group blends top-notch playing, great music and an appealing atmosphere, their repertoire incorporating a wide variety of classical music. “They cross all the style lines and get away with it.” (Los Angeles Times).
Calico Winds have delighted audiences across the country, touring to more than half the fifty states, including numerous cities throughout their home state of California. They are currently ensemble-in-residence at Glendale Noon Concerts. Said of their program, “The artists played in perfect balance with each other, each contributing lovely tone quality and flawless intonation. An unusually fine and beautiful program…played with rock-solid competence and interpretive flair. It was a fantastic evening of music.” (The Times Herald, Olean, NY)
In 2009 Calico Winds were concerto soloists with Frank Fetta conducting the Culver City Symphony, premiering Sinfonia Concertante for wind quintet and orchestra, a work they commissioned from Los Angeles composer Damian Montano. The ensemble performed at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall both as part of the “Classical Connections” Young Performers Career Advancement program sponsored by the Association of Performing Arts Presenters and in recital with pianist Vivian Liu in a performance of Ludwig Thuille’s Romantic Sextet.
In 1998 Calico Winds released their first CD, All in One [Bach, Nielsen, E. Carter, L. Schifrin, Zappa] to critical acclaim. Their second CD, released on Albany Records (2004), Vintage America: A Musical Meritage, features a diverse collection of original and arranged works reflecting the music and life of early Americans. In this recording “Calico Winds bring refreshing lightness to music that is too often bellowed…the quintet’s suave phrasing, lively articulation and rhythmic buoyancy are a delight throughout.” (Gramophone)
Calico Winds has held residencies at La Sierra University, the Idyllwild Arts Academy and with the Claremont Youth Symphony Music Retreat in California as well as at the Birch Creek Music Festival in Door County, Wisconsin. They have been the featured ensemble for the Coleman Chamber Music Association’s Meet the Musicians concerts. As winners of the 1998 National Flute Association (NFA) Chamber Music Competition the ensemble was featured in recital at the NFA convention in Phoenix, Arizona. They have received a grant from the City of Pasadena for The Weekend Muse Inter-Generational Concerts, a series they self-produced in Los Angeles and Pasadena.
The members of Calico Winds think of themselves as a team whose sum is greater than its parts. Despite their resisting the publishing of individual bios, presenters and audience members continue to be interested in each person on stage. To satisfy this curiosity, they have developed “Calico Stats” (vital statistics of each member) which you can view on their website calicowinds.com.
Here is some information about them as individuals:
Between the five of them they have earned one Bachelor of Arts, four Bachelors of Music, four Masters of Music and one (almost two) Doctor of Musical Arts degrees. Their combined musical travels have brought them from Europe to Israel to Mexico and all over North America. They are all active free-lance players in Los Angeles, together having a diverse array of musical experiences from ensembles such as the Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Diego Symphony and Los Angeles Opera, to working with performers like Yanni, Michael Crawford, Cheap Trick, Elton John and Andrea Bocelli.
All of them teach. Eileen is a professional vocalist, Theresa is a gourmet cook, Kay and Rachel run the business of Calico Winds. Ted is a parent to Lewis, born in December, 2011. Kay and Theresa are each parents of dogs. They all enjoy hiking, a good cup of coffee, and fine food and spirits, such as their signature cocktail, Calico Tea, their “special” recipe for Calico Coffee, and their Calico Wings flambé, all recipes found on calicowinds.com.