ALIAS and Gabriela Lena Frank to premiere quartet, Hilos

ALIAS at Blair

ALIAS, Nashville’s most eclectic and critically acclaimed chamber music ensemble, and Latin Grammy Award-winning composer and Guggenheim fellow Gabriela Lena Frank will give the world-premiere performance of Hilos on Friday, October 1, 2010 at 8 p.m. at Vanderbilt University’s Blair School of Music in Nashville.  Also on the program are works by DJ Sparr, Kenji Bunch and Bayani Mendoza de Leon.

The Schubert Club in St. Paul, Minn. will host the second performance of Hilos on Tuesday, November 16, 2010, at 8 p.m.

Commissioned by ALIAS, The Schubert Club, and Drs. Jonathan Neufeld and Jennifer Lena supported by a grant from Vanderbilt University, Hilos (Spanish for “threads”) is an eight-movement quartet for piano, violin, cello and clarinet. It will be performed by Ms. Frank (piano) and three members of the 12-member ALIAS ensemble:  Zeneba Bowers (violin), Matthew Walker (cello) and Lee Levine (clarinet).

ALIAS will record Hilos, which will be released by Naxos on the American Classics imprint, along with other premiere recordings of Ms. Frank’s works, performed by the composer and ALIAS ensemble members.  The recording is anticipated for a 2011 release.

“ALIAS has been inspired by Gabriela for years and has already programmed four of her chamber works on our regular season concerts.  Naturally, we were thrilled and honored to have this opportunity to commission a piece from her and to perform and record it alongside her,” says Zeneba Bowers, founder and artistic director of ALIAS.

Ms. Frank frequently draws on her multicultural Latin heritage as inspiration for her music. In Hilos, each of the short movements evoke vivid pictures, such as “Canto del Altiplano” (Song of the Highlands), “Zumballyu” (Spinning Top), and “Juegos de los Niños” (Games of the Children).

“There are similarities to Pictures at an Exhibition in that each movement tells a different story,” explains Ms. Frank.  “Hilos refers to the ‘threads’ that make up Andean textiles and how these threads weave together to portray tantalizing pictures.  I am looking forward to bringing this piece to life with an innovative, quality ensemble like ALIAS.”

In conjunction with the premiere of Hilos, ALIAS and Ms. Frank will participate in “Mestiza Music in Music City,” an educational outreach initiative that will take place in September and October 2010 as part of National Hispanic Heritage Month.  This NEA-funded initiative will bring Hispanic music, including Hilos, and related educational materials to minority schools and communities in Nashville.  The purpose of the program is to help promote understanding between Nashville’s diverse cultures.  In addition, Ms. Frank is participating in the interdisciplinary Music, Authority and Community project with Drs. Lena and Neufeld at Vanderbilt University.

Tickets to the world-premiere performance of Hilos in Nashville are $12 ($5 for students) and are available in advance at, or by clicking HERE. All proceeds will benefit Conexion Americas.

General Admission $12

Students w/ID $5

Tickets to The Schubert Club performance will go on-sale September 7 and can be purchased by calling 651-292-3268, or by visiting



Founded in 2002, ALIAS is a chamber ensemble dedicated to innovative repertoire, artistic excellence, and a desire to give back to the community. Comprised of 12 professional musicians in Nashville, its wide-ranging repertoire brings audiences a mix of chamber music that cannot be heard anywhere else in the community.  To date, ALIAS has premiered 10 new works and makes a point of performing undiscovered or seldom heard pierces.  As part of its mission, ALIAS also adopts three nonprofit partners each season and gives 100 percent of its ticket proceeds to these partners. For more information about ALIAS, visit:

Gabriela Lena Frank, Composer and Pianist

Identity has always been at the center of Gabriela Lena Frank’s music. Born in Berkeley, California, to a mother of mixed Peruvian/Chinese ancestry and a father of Lithuanian/Jewish descent, Frank explores her multicultural heritage most ardently through her compositions. Inspired by the works of Bela Bartók and Alberto Ginastera, Frank is something of a musical anthropologist. She has travelled extensively throughout South America and her pieces reflect and refract her studies of Latin-American folklore, incorporating poetry, mythology, and native musical styles into a western classical framework that is uniquely her own. She writes challenging idiomatic parts for solo instrumentalists, vocalists, chamber ensembles, and orchestras. For more information about Gabriela Lena Frank, visit: