ALIAS is a nonprofit chamber ensemble dedicated to an innovative repertoire, artistic excellence, and a desire to give back to the community. Its wide-ranging repertoire brings Nashville audiences a mix of chamber music that cannot be heard anywhere else. Its collaborations with local nonprofit service organizations raise awareness of the breadth of giving in our community.
Its 15th season marks a new chapter of ALIAS in the Community, as we embark on new connections to bring educational, informative and entertaining chamber music programs to schools that typically receive little to no arts education funding. This season we have focused on a single partner for our educational and community programming; our concert proceeds will support our efforts to develop meaningful programming for them. This new straightforward approach (a change from donating to three separate nonprofit groups each season) will allow us to deepen our impact on one site in our community. Our partner this year is Whitsitt Elementary School in Nashville and follows programs during the summer at the Nashville Freedom School.
ALIAS formed in the fall of 2002 when a group of Nashville musicians, already well-known as professional orchestra players and teachers, set out to perform chamber music on their own terms. With a new artistic identity, they quickly won praise by performing outstanding repertoire, and donating their time and proceeds to carefully selected local charities.
- In 2003, ALIAS found sponsors and began a critically-acclaimed concert series at Vanderbilt’s Blair School of Music. The audience doubled with innovative programming and PR, and funds donated to charity grew.
- In 2004, ALIAS became a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. ALIAS Education and Community Programs reached out to bring chamber music to W. O. Smith Music School, Nashville School for the Blind, Outlook Nashville, and a program for Nashvillians in substance abuse recovery.
- In 2005, ALIAS launched a website, doubled the donor base, and created partnerships with the Blair School of Music and Vanderbilt University.
- In 2006, ALIAS became PENCIL Partners with Hume-Fogg Academic Magnet School, doubling its reach yet again through school-wide performances and Master Classes for band and orchestra students. This year ALIAS also launched its Double Take series, a collaboration with the Nashville Symphony.
- In 2007, ALIAS began interactive video-conferencing with classrooms from Texas to Florida via The Virtual School at Vanderbilt.
- By 2008, ALIAS had raised thousands for local groups like Better Decisions, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, CASA, Dismas House, Second Harvest Food Bank Kids’ Cafe, Oasis Center, W.O. Smith Music School, and Maternal Infant Health Outreach Worker Program.
- In 2009, ALIAS received its third Best of Nashville award from the Nashville SCENE: “Best Socially Conscious Classical Programming: ALIAS Chamber Ensemble’s Emerging Voices Series.”
- In 2010, ALIAS announces a major new project featuring Guggenheim Fellowship- and Latin Grammy-winning composer Gabriela Lena Frank. The project includes the first-ever ALIAS recording, featuring Ms. Frank’s chamber works for NAXOS, on its American Classics label.
- In 2011, ALIAS and Frank receive their first Grammy nomination for Hilos in the Grammy category for Best Small Ensemble Performance.
- In 2012, ALIAS performs with the Nashville Ballet on the Ballet’s groundbreaking “Emergence” series, which subsequently received a “Best of Nashville” in the SCENE for “Best Modern Dance Composition”; and the ensemble records and releases its second CD, “Boiling Point”, works of virtuoso violist and composer Kenji Bunch, on the Delos label. The disc reaches the Billboard Top 100 Classical chart in its first week of release.
- In 2014, ALIAS partners with the Nashville Ballet and Portara Ensemble to commission and perform “Amorisms,” a work for choir and chamber ensemble, written by Pulitzer Prize-winning American composer Paul Moravec. Joined by Portara, ALIAS records and releases its third CD, featuring “Amorisms” and other chamber works by Moravec, to critical acclaim.
- In 2016, ALIAS refocuses its charitable efforts in Middle Tennessee, developing the ALIAS in the Community program, where musicians from the Ensemble bring educational, informative and entertaining chamber music programs to schools that typically receive little to no arts education funding.