PRISON RESIDENCY PROJECT
In May, 2016, the Soleras were invited by the non-profit, Project: Music Heals Us, to perform a concert in a Connecticut prison. This transformative experience sparked a passion in the quartet to bring interactive, thoughtfully-conceived chamber music concerts into incarcerated communities across the country. Since that first concert, and with the support of PMHU, the Solera Quartet Prison Outreach Residency has already brought dozens of quartet concerts to federal and state correctional institutions at all security levels in Connecticut, New York, and California -- and continues to grow rapidly. The Soleras were awarded the 2017 Father Eugène Merlet Award for Community Service in support of a pilot program launched in January, 2018 - a week-long musical immersion centered on Beethoven’s Op. 95 at Danbury Federal Correctional Institution. This program featured concerts for inmates and staff, deep, investigative listening activities, daily interactive study sessions on the life of Beethoven, and a creative composers’ workshop. At the end of the program, the Soleras recorded inmates’ compositions, inspired by the week’s work.
This season, the Soleras are grateful to Chamber Music America for awarding us the 2018 Guarneri String Quartet Residency, funded by the Sewell Family Foundation. This award will allow us to double our capacity, making two week-long musical immersions possible. Stay tuned for more updates, blog posts, and reflections on our work sharing music in the prison system.