San Francisco’s beloved Kronos Quartet joins forces with Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Ellen Reid to bring this self-guided, musical experience to San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park. Ellen Reid SOUNDWALK is a GPS-enabled work of public art that uses music to illuminate the natural environment. SOUNDWALK is tailor-made for its setting, created to encourage calm reflection and introspection, and can be experienced while following social distancing guidelines.
The listener guides the SOUNDWALK experience: the path you choose dictates the music you hear, and no two visits will be exactly the same. After installing the free smartphone app, participants can explore Golden Gate Park, triggering musical cells that harmonize with the park’s landscapes and attractions. Kronos, Reid, and other musicians recorded these compositions entirely from home in 2020 during the COVID-19 shelter-in-place order.
Other editions of SOUNDWALK have previously launched in New York, Los Angeles, and several other cities across the country. SOUNDWALK launches as part of the 2021 Kronos Festival (June 11–18) and is co-produced by McEvoy Arts in conjunction with the exhibition Next to You (May 28 – December 4). It will remain available in San Francisco through June 2024.
Kronos Quartet—David Harrington (violin), John Sherba (violin), Hank Dutt (viola), and Sunny Yang (cello)—has combined a spirit of fearless exploration with a commitment to continually reimagine the string quartet experience for more than 45 years. In the process, Kronos has become one of the world’s most celebrated and influential ensembles, performing thousands of concerts, releasing more than sixty recordings, collaborating with countless composers and performers, and commissioning over 1000 works and arrangements for string quartet. The group has won over forty awards, including three Grammys, and the prestigious Polar Music, Avery Fisher, and Edison Klassiek Oeuvre Prizes. The nonprofit Kronos Performing Arts Association manages all aspects of Kronos’ work, including the commissioning of new works, concert tours and home season performances, education programs, and the annual Kronos Festival. In 2015, Kronos launched Fifty for the Future: The Kronos Learning Repertoire, an education and legacy project that is commissioning—and distributing online for free—50 new works for string quartet written by composers from around the world.
Ellen Reid is a composer and sound artist whose breadth of work spans opera, sound design, film scoring, ensemble and choral writing. She was awarded the 2019 Pulitzer Prize in Music for her opera, p r i s m, and along with composer Missy Mazzoli co-founded the Luna Composition Lab, a mentorship program for young female, nonbinary, and gender non-conforming composers. Since the fall of 2019, she has served as Creative Advisor and Composer-in-Residence for Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra. Reid received her BFA from Columbia College, Columbia University and her MA from California Institute of the Arts. She is inspired by music from all over the globe, and she splits her time between Los Angeles and New York. Her music is released on Decca Gold.
Ellen Reid SOUNDWALK at Golden Gate Park is presented by the Kronos Performing Arts Association in association with McEvoy Foundation for the Arts. SOUNDWALK is presented in conjunction with the 2021 Kronos Festival (June 11–18) and the exhibition Next to You (May 28–December 4, 2021) at McEvoy Arts.