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School of Music

USC Spark Residency

Residency: invoke

Winner of the 2016 SAVVY Chamber Competition, invoke is a “not classical...but not not classical,” bowed and fretted string quartet that continues to successfully dodge even the most valiant attempts at genre classification.

“If the goal was to make classical music relevant, it couldn't have proven the point any more clearly.” – Columbia Free Times



Monday, Oct. 9, 2017

Seminar Presentation

1:10-2:00 p.m.

Recital Hall

Tuesday, Oct. 10, 2017

Spark Collective Workshop
String Quartet Coaching

2:20-3:00 p.m.
3:20-4:20 p.m.

Room 012
Room 012

Wednesday, Oct. 11, 2017

Seminar Presentation
Jazz Strings Workshop

1:10-2:00 p.m.
7:00–8:15 p.m.

Recital Hall

Room 040

Thursday, Oct. 12, 2017

Outreach Performances
String Project Presentation

9:00 am-1:00 p.m.
7:00-7:45 p.m.

Off Campus
String Project Building

Friday, Oct. 13, 2017

Composition Seminar
Southern Exposure Concert

2:30-4:00 p.m.
7:30 p.m.

Room 210
Recital Hall


About invoke

Described by one pretty important radio guy as “not classical...but not not classical,” bowed and fretted string quartet, invoke, continues to successfully dodge even the most valiant attempts at genre classification. The multi-instrumental band’s other not-nots encompass traditions from across America, including bluegrass, Appalachian fiddle tunes, jazz and minimalism. Invoke weaves all of these traditions together to create truly unique contemporary string quartet repertoire, written by and for the group.

Invoke’s 2015 debut release “Souls in the Mud” begins with original works that conjure images of America, including the fast-paced opening track "Travesty and The Trace" (inspired by bourbon whiskey). The third and title track, "Souls in the Mud," is an American transformation of a 16th-century motet featuring banjo, mandolin and a bluegrass-influenced boot-stompin’ finale. The EP is rounded out by invoke accompanying a historic recording of a haunting traditional English ballad and two compositions by prolific American composer Danny Clay.

Since its inception in 2013, invoke has been selected as Artists-in-Residence at Strathmore, Emerging Young Artist Quartet at Interlochen and Fellowship String Quartet at Wintergreen Performing Arts. Invoke has shared the stage with some of the most acclaimed chamber groups in the country, including the Enso Quartet and the U.S. Army Field Band. Other performance highlights include appearances in Columbia, SC, as honorable mention recipients at the SAVVY Musician in Action workshop, on two consecutive seasons of the Common Tone concert series in Maryland, and as part of the Radical Sound collective.

In addition to “Souls in the Mud,” invoke has performed and recorded numerous world premieres including works by Geoff Sheil and Joel Pierson. The quartet’s recording credits appear on bassist/composer Ethan Foote’s solo album “Fields Burning,” singer/songwriter Marian McLaughlin’s critically acclaimed album “Spirit House,” and most recently on singer/songwriter Ruut's newest record "Untold Stories." Equally at home in a collaborative setting, invoke has appeared with musicians from genres at complete opposite ends of the spectrum – from chamber rock powerhouse San Fermin, to indie sensation Never Shout Never, to DC jazz/soul singer Rochelle Rice.

invoke website