The Now Hear Ensemble’s goal is to combine the intimacy of the classical concert experience with electronic music, video art, installation art, and contemporary theater, embracing both contemporary music and pop culture, as they believe a cross-genre approach leads to new territory for creativity.
The Santa Barbara-based ensemble has performed at renowned venues such as the Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater (REDCAT), the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Santa Barbara, the Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA) at Stanford University, the Center for New Music and Audio Technologies (CNMAT) at UC Berkeley, the Conrad Prebys Music Center at UC San Diego, the Center for New Music in San Francisco, the Fisher Museum at the University of Southern California, and the Carlsbad Music Festival.
Since their founding in 2012, the group has commissioned and premiered over 25 new works from composers such as Dan VanHassel, Anthony Paul Garcia, Nick Norton, Constantin Basica, Joshua Carro, Jon Myers, Luke Taylor, Federico Llach, Marc Evans, Anders Lind, Mateo Lugo, Daniel Miller, Fernando Rincón Estrada, Eoin Callery, Kevin Zhang, David Gordon, Iván Naranjo, Carolyn Chen, Brandon Rolle, Mason Hock, Heena Yoon, David Werfrelmann, and Todd Lerew. Past projects have included a collaboration with California-based composers that resulted in their 2013 debut album and tour, "Made in California," as well as commissions of installations and concert music made with bicycle wheels, paper shredders, ping-pong tables, megaphones, and custom-made instruments. In 2013, the ensemble’s recording of Dan VanHassel’s "Ghost in the Machine"—from "Made in California"—was featured on the BBC Radio 3 show “Late Junction.”
In September of 2016, the ensemble was in residence at the Avaloch Farm Music Institute, where they collaborated with composers Florent Ghys and Dan VanHassel on various projects, including VanHassel’s "Invective." Upcoming projects include a collaboration with University of California, Irvine composers, as well as a performance of Clarence Barlow’s music at REDCAT in April 2017.
The Now Hear Ensemble (Adriane Hill, flute/piccolo; Amanda Kritzberg, clarinets; Jonathan Morgan, viola/violin; Federico Llach, double bass/electronics; Anthony Paul Garcia, percussion/electronics) is Resident Ensemble at the University of California, Santa Barbara Department of Music. The ensemble has received generous support from the Department of Music and the University of California Institute for Research in the Arts (UCIRA).