The NEXT Festival of Emerging Artists: World Premieres Featuring Guest violinist Curtis Stewart and cellist Seth Parker Woods

  • June 7, 2024 7:30 PM - 9:00 PM
  • PS21 "Open-Air" Pavilion Theater (General Admission)

    2980 New York 66
    Chatham, New York 12037
Ticket Price Free Reserve your seat

The NEXT Festival of Emerging Artists celebrates its 11th Anniversary with a preview of their New York City performance, including five World Premieres for string orchestra.

Next Fest: The Next Festival of Emerging Artists In concert following their weeklong PS21 residency, 3 with World Premieres of Essay #1: Leave the People by Grammy nominee Curtis Stewart, violinist and Artistic Director of the American Composers Orchestra; new works by Michael Dudley Jr. and Next Festival Artistic Director Peter Askim; and a performance of Rebecca Saunders’ Ire, her concerto for cello, strings, and percussion, featuring guest artist cellist Seth Parker Woods.


Pay as you wish event (suggested donation  $15). All proceeds from this event will go to the Crellin Park Summer Camp fund for scholarship attendees. 



Founded in 2013 by composer, conductor, and bassist Peter Askim, The NEXT Festival of Emerging Artists is committed to advancing contemporary concert music through performance, audience engagement, and the nurturing of emerging artists with a passion for 21st century music.

In recent years, the Next Festival has featured some of the most prominent figures in new music today: guest artists including Tony Arnold, Matt Haimovitz, Jennifer Koh, Nadia Sirota, Richard Thompson, Jeffrey Zeigler, Miranda Cuckson, and the string quartet ETHEL; and composers including Aaron Jay Kernis, Derek Bermel, Lisa Bielawa, Liisa Hirsch, Pierre Jalbert, Phil Kline, Jessica Meyer, and Aleksandra Vrebalov; as well as choreographer Christopher D’Amboise. The Festival’s concerts have drawn capacity audiences and have been featured on WQXR/Q2’s New York Now, and in 2018 the Festival was featured for the first time at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Festival was awarded the Ernst Bacon Memorial Award in the Performance of American Music and was also recognized by the Vytaytas Marijosius Memorial Award in Orchestral Programming.

The Festival provides young performers and composers (ages 20-30) an immersion into 21st century music. Initially a one-week intensive, the Next Festival is now a multi-week experience consisting of performances, individual lessons, coaching, masterclasses, and more. Twenty participating string players will grace PS21’s open-air Pavilion stage alongside the guest composers and performers.


Peter Askim

Artistic Director Peter Askim is a composer, conductor, and bassist and Music Director of the Raleigh Civic Symphony and Chamber Orchestra, as well as Director of Orchestral Activities at North Carolina State University. Championing the music of our time, he has premiered works by Richard Danielpour, Nico Muhly, Aaron Jay Kernis, and Christopher Theofanidis, and collaborated with the Miró String Quartet, Matt Haimovitz, Vijay Iyer, Jeffrey Zeigler, Nadia Sirota, and Sō Percussion. The Strad has called him a “Modern Master” of composition, and his commissions and performances span soloists and groups from the Tokyo Symphony Orchestra, the Honolulu Symphony, Cantus Ansambl Zagreb, and the American Viola Society, ETHEL, cellist Jeffrey Zeigler, flutist/conductor Ransom Wilson, and violinist Timothy Fain.

Askim is the founder and Artistic Director of The Next Festival of Emerging Artists, a summer festival dedicated to cultivating the next generation of performers and composers. Focusing on the music of living composers, the festival artists frequently perform at World Premieres and collaborate closely with prominent composers on performances of their works. Led by Mr. Askim, The Next Festival has received numerous grants and awards for performances of American music, adventurous programming, and educational outreach since its inception in 2013. In conjunction with Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Aaron Jay Kernis and Tony-nominated choreographer Christopher D’Amboise, Mr. Askim founded the Next Festival Composer and Composer/Choreographer workshops, connecting early-career performers, composers, and choreographers in an innovative and highly collaborative laboratory for the creation of new works.

Curtis Stewart

Praised for “combining omnivory and brilliance” (The New York Times), four-time Grammy-nominated violinist and composer Curtis Stewart translates stories of American self-determination to the concert stage. Tearing down the facade of “classical violinist,” Stewart is in constant pursuit of his musical authenticity, treating art as a battery for realizing citizenship. As a solo violinist, composer, Artistic Director of the American Composers Orchestra, professor at The Juilliard School, and member of award-winning ensembles PUBLIQuartet and The Mighty Third Rail, Stewart is in constant pursuit of musical authenticity, finding personal and powerful connections between styles, cultures, and music. His 2023 album of Love., a tribute to his late mother Elektra Kurtis-Stewart, has been nominated for a 2024 Grammy as Best Instrumental Solo, his  2021 album of quarantined song cycles and art videos, Of Power (Bright Shiny Things), was nominated for a Grammy for Best Classical Instrumental Solo.

Stewart has performed as a soloist at  Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, The Kennedy Center, and the 2022 Grammy Awards, among many other venues. He has appeared with Los Angeles Opera and singer-songwriter Tamar Kali; as curator and guest soloist with Anthony Roth Costanzo and the New York Philharmonic “Bandwagon,” touring performance installations from NYC’s Whitney Museum, Guggenheim Museum, and Museum of Modern Art; in  MTV specials with Wyclef Jean and sold-out shows at Madison Square Garden with Stevie Wonder, Bruce Springsteen, and Seal. Stewart has held chamber music residencies at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and National Sawdust and received commissions for solo, chamber, and orchestral works by many artists and ensembles, including the Seattle Symphony, Virginia Symphony Orchestra, Carnegie Hall’s Play/USA, countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo and members of the New York Philharmonic, Newport Classical Festival, the Royal Conservatory of Music, the Eastman Cello Institute.

Seth Parker Woods

Hailed as “a cellist of power and grace” (The Guardian), Grammy-nominated cellist Seth Parker Woods has established his reputation as a versatile artist and innovator across multiple genres. His projects delve deep into our cultural fabric, reimagining traditional works and commissioning new ones to propel classical music into the future, inspiring The New York Times to write, “Woods is an artist rooted in classical music, but whose cello is a vehicle that takes him, and his concertgoers, on wide-ranging journeys.” He is an honoree of the 2023 Seattle Symphony’s 25th Anniversary Silver Gala and recipient of the 2022 Chamber Music America Michael Jaffee Visionary Award. Woods is an Assistant Professor of Practice - Cello and Chamber Music at USC’s Thornton School of Music and has been a frequent artist in residence with the Kaufman Music Center, the Seattle Symphony, and elsewhere.

Woods has appeared with the ICTUS Ensemble (Brussels, BE), Ensemble L’Arsenale (IT), zone Experimental (CH), Basel Sinfonietta (CH), Ensemble LPR, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, the Atlanta and Seattle Symphonies, and in chamber music with Hilary Hahn and pianist Andreas Haefliger. A fierce advocate for contemporary arts, Woods has collaborated and worked with a wide range of artists ranging from the likes of Louis Andriessen, Elliott Carter, Heinz Holliger, G. F. Haas, Helmut Lachenmann, Klaus Lang, and Peter Eötvos to Peter Gabriel, Sting, Lou Reed, Dame Shirley Bassey, and Rachael Yamagata to such visual artists as Ron Athey, Vanessa Beecroft, Jack Early, Adam Pendleton, and Aldo Tambellini. He has premiered concertos by Rebecca Saunders and Tyshawn Sorey and is a member of the celebrated new music ensemble Wild Up, the group that received the 2023 Grammy nomination. His concert dates have taken him throughout the US, Europe, and Asia.



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Date & Time

Fri, Jun 7, 2024 7:30 PM - 9:00 PM

Venue Details

PS21 "Open-Air" Pavilion Theater (General Admission)

2980 New York 66
Chatham, New York 12037 PS21 "Open-Air" Pavilion Theater (General Admission)
PS/21 Inc

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About PS21

A vibrant center for contemporary performance in the Hudson Valley, PS21 “presents work that challenges and invites” (The New York Times): adventurous productions by leading and emerging American and international artists in music, dance, and theater, and visionaries creating entirely new genres. On our open-air Pavilion Theater stage, across our expansive, unspoiled grounds, and in the diverse surrounding communities, PS21 cultivates and presents productions that transcend aesthetic boundaries and revitalize existing artistic languages and grammars. Throughout the year, we host developmental residencies for dancers, musicians, actors, and creators of original, even unclassifiable new work. Rooted in community collaboration, PS21’s programming engages creatively with critical global and social issues. It is a mecca for innovative and original artistic voices, a destination for performance that can be experienced nowhere else in the region. PS21’s Pavilion Theater is a green-energy marvel surrounded by 100 acres of unspoiled meadows, trails, and woodlands that are a haven to wildlife and visitors across the region.  Integrated into our unspoiled campus, the theater embodies our commitments to the public: open, inviting, and optimized for their enjoyment and encouraging citizen expression and participation.


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