(Posted April 7, 2003)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- The Turtle Island String Quartet, a classically trained chamber music group noted for playing all varieties of American "roots" music as well as classical selections, will perform as part of the Juniata College Artist Series at 8:15 p.m., Friday, April 11 in Rosenberger Auditorium in Oller Hall on the Juniata campus.

For tickets and information about the Juniata College Artist Series, please call (814) 641-3605. General admission tickets for single performances are $15. Single-show tickets for seniors over age 65 and children age 18 and under are $8. Juniata College students are admitted free with a student ID.

The quartet plays folk, bluegrass, swing, be-bop jazz, New Age, funk and rhythym and blues, hip-hop and Latin styles. Calling their performing style, "American Vernacular," the quartet plays the work of composers ranging from Mozart to Dizzy Gillespie.

The quartet has an active recording career on the Windham Hill label, noted for its electic mix of instrumental artists. The group's albums include "Turtle Island String Quartet," "Metropolis," "Skylife," "On the Town," "Spider Dreams," "A Night in Tunisia, A Week in Detroit" and several Windham Hill sampler albums.

The group's work also has been used in the film "Affliction" and the television series "Sex in the City." In addition, the group has performed on such television programs as NBC's "The Today Show," CBS' "Sunday Morning," and the "Lonesome Pine Special" on PBS. The group also performs regularly on a variety of National Public Radio programs.

The group was founded in 1986 by violinist David Balakrishnan and often collaborates with musicians such as banjo player Bela Fleck and saxophonist Paquito D'Rivera.

Violinist Balakrishnan is the primary composer and arranger for the group. He earned a bachelor's degree in music from UCLA and a master's degree from Antioch College. He received a Grammy nomination in 1989.

Violinist Evan Price has extensive experience as a jazz and folk instrumentalist. He has performed with such musicians as Robert Plant, Stephane Grapelli and Mark O'Connor. He studied at Berklee College and was on the music faculty at Wellesley College.

Violist Danny Seidenberg has performed with the American Ballet Theater, the New York City Opera, the American Symphony Orchestra, the Joffrey Ballet and the Dance Theater of Harlem.

Cellist Mark Summer is a graduate of the Cleveland Institute of Music and played with the Winnipeg Symphony for three years. He went on to play with the Chamber Symphony of San Francisco, the Oakland Symphony and the Oakland Ballet.

Contact April Feagley at feaglea@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3131 for more information.