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$15,229
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307
backers
17days to go

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Sat, October 5 2019 1:00 AM UTC +00:00.

Kinds of Kings: The 2019-2020 Season

A season of new works, outreaches, and initiatives by composer collective Kinds of Kings.

Kinds of Kings: The 2019-2020 Season

A season of new works, outreaches, and initiatives by composer collective Kinds of Kings.

$15,229
pledged of $25,000pledged of $25,000 goal
307
backers
17days to go

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Sat, October 5 2019 1:00 AM UTC +00:00.

About

We're Kinds of Kings and we are incredibly excited to have been named artists-in-residence at National Sawdust and we want to thank everyone who has supported us in the few years since we began (hi mums and moms!). 

It’s a dream come true to have the opportunity to produce a fully-curated season, Equilibrium and Disturbance, with immersive video art, pre-concert events, and our first-ever mentorship program for early-career composers. We want to use our year-long residency at National Sawdust to become community creators and to open up opportunities for historically marginalized groups of people to hear, write, and perform new music. 

We’re also looking forward to having our season kickoff concert at Roulette Intermedium with ~Nois saxophone quartet from Chicago, and recording both our debut and sophomore albums with ~Nois and the phenomenal Rubiks Collective from Australia!

We have big plans for the residency and the rest of the season, and we would really love for you to be part of making them happen!

What’s Kinds of Kings?

Kinds of Kings was founded in 2017 as a composer collective, with the idea of sharing resources, jokes, and tales of woe amongst each other. Before we even realized it, the collective had morphed into an advocacy and performance-based group with a series of portrait concerts. We are all female composers and our collective includes women of color and immigrants to the United States; our fundamental mission is to shine light on the work of marginalized voices, as many groups - such as women and people of color - have historically been excluded or erased from classical music. Even today, in the 2018-2019 season merely 5% of concerts programmed by major orchestras worldwide included works written by female composers.

We’ve been described as, “distinguished young creators who work in diverse styles,” (The New Yorker) and we have a focus on amplifying and advocating for under-heard voices and producing immersive and inclusive work. Our six members are Gemma Peacocke (New Zealand), Susanna Hancock (US), Maria Kaoutzani (Cyprus), Finola Merivale (Ireland), Emma O’ Halloran (Ireland) and Shelley Washington (US). 

It us! L-R Shelley Washington, Gemma Peacocke, Maria Kaoutzani, Finola Merivale, Emma O'Halloran, Susanna Hancock. Photography by Tyler Kline.
It us! L-R Shelley Washington, Gemma Peacocke, Maria Kaoutzani, Finola Merivale, Emma O'Halloran, Susanna Hancock. Photography by Tyler Kline.

Gemma and Shelley are currently doing doctorates in composition at Princeton University, and Emma just graduated from Princeton! (She’s Dr. Emma now.) Maria is doing her doctorate at the University of Chicago, and Finola is doing hers at Columbia. Susanna has just made the switch from being a Professor of Aural Theory  to full-time composer.

We’ve had concerts in Tampa, FL, St Louis, MO, Chicago, IL, and New York, NY. Susanna currently lives in Kentucky, Maria lives in Chicago, Emma and Finola live in New York, and Shelley and Gemma live in Princeton, NJ. 

Artwork by Gemma Peacocke.
Artwork by Gemma Peacocke.

What’s Equilibrium and Disturbance?

We are focusing our  2019-2020 season on an idea drawn from ecology: the concept of equilibrium and disturbance. As relatively outspoken female composers, we’re disrupting the conventions of classical music in order to make space for ourselves and others and to make classical music concerts more exciting and welcoming.

Our season includes a series of four concerts at National Sawdust featuring New York-based Nouveau Classical Project, Real Loud, pianist Isabelle O’Connell, and Rubiks Collective from Melbourne, Australia. 

We’re opening the season with a brand new program of saxophone works with Chicago’s ~Nois saxophone quartet at the wonderful Roulette Intermedium (with Shelley guest-starring on her saxophone duet Big Talk. Come for the ~choice wardrobe~; stay for the dueling baris.) We’ll then be heading to the studio with ~Nois to record a studio album of our saxophone music.

Our season will close at National Sawdust with our first-ever collaborative Kinds of Kings work, Towards Home, for award-winning Australian ensemble Rubiks Collective. Following the concert at National Sawdust, we’ll be heading back to the studio to record Towards Home with Rubiks.

Each of the six of us is writing between two and three new pieces to be premiered on the concert series, and we’re working with director Benita de Wit (oy vey – another Australian) and video artist Xuan to make each concert immersive and transporting. 

What are these professional development programs and events?

We’ve invited some of our favo(u)rite composers to come and speak at pre-concert events about how they create new ideas and the techniques they use to compose, as well as the general challenges they’ve faced.

Throughout the season we will be collaborating with Face the Music, the renowned New York-based education program for young people dedicated to the performance of works by living composers. 

What’s the Bouman Fellowship?

We’re incredibly excited to be launching our own mentorship and advocacy program - the Bouman Fellowship Program - named after Dr. Katie Bouman, the computer scientist who created the algorithm to capture the first image of a black hole. In that same spirit of innovation, we have selected three early-career composers as our inaugural fellows:

Mason Bynes (Denton, TX)

Andrew Rodriguez (Urbana, IL)

Cassie Wieland (Brooklyn, NY)

Each of the Fellows will receive a $1000 commission to write a brand new piece that will be premiered on the Equilibrium and Disturbance season at National Sawdust, as well as year-round mentorship from the members of Kinds of Kings. 

Desdemona Ensemble performing Kinds of Kings string quartets, presented by Metropolis Ensemble in New York, NY. Photography by Susanna Hancock.
Desdemona Ensemble performing Kinds of Kings string quartets, presented by Metropolis Ensemble in New York, NY. Photography by Susanna Hancock.

When are the concerts happening?

October 24, 2019 :  Kinds of Kings and sax Wunderkinder ~Nois at Roulette Intermedium

December 11, 2019 :  Shelley Washington and Finola Merivale with electric guitar, drum and bass thrashers Real Loud at National Sawdust

March 19, 2020 :  Gemma Peacocke and Emma O’Halloran with pianist/genius Isabelle O’Connell at National Sawdust

May 20, 2020 :  Susanna Hancock and Maria Kaoutzani with fashion icons Nouveau Classical Project plus guests at National Sawdust

June 13, 2020 :  Kinds of Kings with the sparkling and enigmatic Rubiks Collective at National Sawdust 

Where will the money go?

Your donation will go towards costs including: 

  • Artist fees for our performers, director, and video artist
  • Commission fees for the inaugural Bouman Fellows
  • Speaker fees for our amazing guest composers
  • Instrument hire (Gemma just loves marimba)
  • Travel for Maria and Susanna to come to NYC for residency/concerts
  • Studio and recording fees for our debut album

Your donation won’t go towards paying any of us in the collective for our composing or administrative work. This Kickstarter campaign is to ensure we can pay our collaborators fairly, and cover all of the extra costs that come with producing a concert series.

Expenses (with Amount)

Creative Team Fees (Director, Video Artist, Lighting Designer) : $6000

Travel Costs (Maria Kaoutzani and Susanna Hancock) : $3000

Bouman Fellowship Program: commissions ($1000 x 3) : $3,000

In My Studio Pre-Concert Events (catering and honoraria) : $2,800

Concert 1: ~Nois – performer fees : $2,000

Concert 2: Real Loud – performer fees : $3,200

Concert 3: Equilibrium and Disturbance – performer fees : $800

Concert 4: Refraction – performer fees : $3,900

Concert 5: Towards Home – performer fees and instrument hire : $3,200

Album Recording Costs : $5,000

Total : $32,900

*Fees for performance and rehearsal time/space rental will be incurred and/or waived by the presenting venues.

**So far, we have received $10,000 in funding for this season, and any outstanding money left in the budget will be used to cover Kickstarter fees and reward costs/fulfillment, as well as create a contingency fund (things don’t always go according to plan!).


Thank you from the bottom of our hearts! We hope to see *you* at a concert soon. <3

Gemma, Shelley, Emma, Maria, Susanna, and Finola

Risks and challenges

[What are some general risks and challenges that Kinds of Kings faces?]

Most of the challenges we will face in this upcoming year involve funding to ensure we can produce the amazing season we have curated. All six of us are writing several ambitious pieces (in both length and subject matter) and we need to stick to strict deadlines, while also doing our other work (including composing and administration for Kinds of Kings and our individual composition projects, as well as teaching and occasionally going outside to check that the sky is still there. It normally is).

[How will Kinds of Kings coordinate this massive season in NYC from different parts of the country/world?]

We each have our own styles of composing and working, and our music spans the full spectrum of contemporary classical music. We have a unique way of divvying up the significant administrative workload of the collective. We each focus on managing specific areas (such as finances, social media, production, etc.) and we keep in touch every day with instant messaging and phone calls. We communicate constantly to make things work!

[Why has Kinds of Kings decided to launch a Kickstarter campaign? Why don’t you look at traditional avenues, such as grants?]

Foremost, we want to create a community and safe space in music where all are welcome. We want young women, girls, non-binary and gender diverse individuals, people of colo(u)r, people with special abilities, and all others to be able to see us and our New York concert series and truly know that they too can build careers in music. We want to interface with young and emerging composers - whether they are 5 or 55 - and build relationships and offer mentorship. We want to foster true and authentic friendship amongst peers, and create an environment in which musicians radically support each other. We want to use our platform and resources to uplift marginalized voices in any way possible.

For our financial reasons: it is *extremely* difficult for us to find funding that we, as a collective, are eligible for. Many grants have delineating criteria, such as “US citizens only” or “professional musicians only” (no students), and though we are proud of our different backgrounds, these delineations make it scarce for us to find grants that we are ALL eligible for (and with that being said, grants are extremely competitive and applying does not guarantee acceptance).

[What will happen if Kinds of Kings does not raise the full amount of money necessary to bring the season to fruition?]

We don’t want to think about that! We have already worked hundreds of hours designing the residency and season, coordinating logistics, writing the music… and we have faith that we will be able to bring all of this season to fruition!

Though, in all seriousness: we would continue looking for other funding options, and potentially have to pay for the season out of pocket (though we are already receiving *no* compensation for our composing or administrative work), and/or reassess the scope and budget of what we have planned. We really don’t want to do that!

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    Kings' Court

    Thank You Note + Sticker!

    A personalized thank you note signed by all 6 Kings! We'll also include a vinyl KoK sticker, perfect to sport your support on your laptop, instrument case, or local lamp pole.

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    Royal Consort

    ~Nois / Kinds of Kings Album (Download)

    Be the first to hear our *very first* collective album, recorded by our amazing friends and collaborators, ~Nois saxophone quartet! You'll receive a digital download of the album.

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    Crown Jewels

    Kinds of Kings Tote Bag + Goodies!

    These are a few of our favo(u)rite things! We'll send you a custom Kinds of Kings tote bag filled with King-approved goodies like an enamel pin, a vinyl sticker, and a handy pencil!

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    Fit for a King

    *KoK*Starter Shirt

    You'll receive a limited edition Kinds of Kings shirt designed specifically for this Kickstarter!

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    By Royal Decree

    A Score from a King!

    You will receive a signed/personalized digital download of a score (for an instrumentation of up to six instruments) from one of the Kings! You may request a composer, specific piece, and/or instrument(s) to be included in the score and our best efforts for accommodation will be made.

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    Royal Appointment

    (K)night with a King + Donor Acknowledgement!

    Have you always wanted to pick the brain of a King? Now is the time! You can enjoy an hour-long chat with one of the Kings about your music, our music, your pets, our pets... and the list goes on. Whenever possible, we'd be happy to meet with you in person, and when not, we'd be happy to hang out via video chat!

    We'll also acknowledge you as a key donor in our season program booklets because you have played an integral role in bringing this season to life!

    Includes all previous rewards (King's Court, Royal Consort, Crown Jewels, Fit for a King, By Royal Decree).

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    All Hail King Katie

    Bouman Commissioning + Naming Rights!

    Co-commissioner credit in a score written by one of the three inaugural Bouman Fellowship composers (Mason Bynes, Cassie Wieland, and Andrew Rodriguez). You will receive a signed and personalized copy of each Bouman Fellow's score, and receive naming rights in our season program booklets.

    Includes all previous rewards (Kings' Court, Royal Consort, Crown Jewels, Fit for a King, By Royal Decree, Royal Appointment).

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    Royal Treatment

    VIP Concert Experience!

    We invite you to have a night out with Kinds of Kings! Before one of our season concerts, you and one guest can join us for an intimate dinner (on us) and then enjoy the show with reserved front row seating. Afterward, have a champagne toast and a photo op with all six members of Kinds of Kings! A professionally edited, high resolution photo will printed, signed, framed, and delivered to you to remember the evening!

    *Travel and accommodation is not included.

    Includes all previous rewards (Kings' Court, Royal Consort, Crown Jewels, Fit for a King, By Royal Decree, Royal Appointment, All Hail King Katie).

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    The Kings' Commissioner

    KoK Commissioning Credit!

    Co-commissioner credit in all six scores for TOWARDS HOME, the first ever group piece of Kinds of Kings. You will receive a signed and personalized copy of each King's score for the piece, acknowledgement in the TOWARDS HOME concert program booklet, and a limited edition print (artwork) commemorating the piece.

    Includes all previous rewards (King's Court, Royal Consort, Crown Jewels, Fit for a King, By Royal Decree, Royal Appointment, All Hail King Katie, Royal Treatment).

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    Kingdom Come

    Your Very Own KoK Concert!

    Kinds of Kings will present an evening of chamber works in your home (or other provided space) performed by some of our dearest collaborators. We can also make a mean cheese board!

    *New York or Chicago only.

    Includes all previous rewards (Kings' Court, Royal Consort, Crown Jewels, Fit for a King, By Royal Decree, Royal Appointment, All Hail King Katie, Royal Treatment, The Kings' Commissioner).

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