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Quartet, choir to fill bridgehouse with river-inspired music

Suburban Piano Quartet

(Above) The Suburban Piano Quartet. (Click on image to view larger version.)

1-Oct-15 – Music inspired by the Chicago River will be performed throughout the McCormick Bridgehouse in mid-October.

Friends of the Chicago River commissioned The Suburban Piano Quartet to compose original music to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Eastland disaster.

When Requiem in Water debuts on October 19, the quartet and a 16-member choir will be scattered throughout the five-story bridgehouse. Audience members will be encouraged to explore the Chicago River Museum located in the bridgehouse during the performance and, says the museum, “reflect on the music and history at their own pace.”

“The piece uses the classical form of the Requiem Mass as a point of departure to explore loss and redemption on the Chicago River and Lake Michigan in recognition of the tragic loss of the 844 people who were aboard the Eastland when it capsized,” explains Joanne So Young Dill, director of the Bridgehouse Museum.

Joanne So Young Dill According to the museum, its acoustics are “incredible” and placing performers on each floor will create a “soundscape that promises to be both unique and moving.”

(Left) Joanne So Young Dill

The Suburban Piano Quartet is comprised of Nadine Dyskant-Miller, Clay Gonzalez, Perry Maddox, and Corey Smith. They founded the quartet in 2013 while attending University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre and Dance. The group also includes musicians from Canada.

Performance video uploaded to YouTube shows the quartet playing a variety of instruments, not just piano, and vocal technique that includes both singing and speaking.

The group is using a crowdfunding website to raise money for the performance. Expenses include transportation from Ann Arbor and Montreal, food and lodging, and purchasing large metal pipes to use in the performance.