Firebird Ensemble

Type: Performance
Art Form: Music
Grade Level: Pre K - 8

Founded in 2001 and directed by violist Kate Vincent, Firebird Ensemble has been described as “ambitious and eclectic” by the New York Times and has earned a reputation as one of the premier new music ensembles in the United States. Known for its highly varied contemporary repertoire, virtuosic performances and wide audience appeal, Firebird Ensemble’s repertoire spans a time period from the mid 20th century to the present day and includes music originating from diverse sources and genres. Firebird Ensemble has completed over 40 multi-activity concert projects including interdisciplinary collaborations, microtonal music, contemporary/jazz/rock crossover, improvisation and also of course numerous programs featuring the cornerstones of contemporary music literature.

Eeyore Has A Birthday is performed by violinist Kate Vincent, pianist Sara Bob and bassist Scot Fitzsimmons. 

Kate Vincent, Violin
Kate Vincent, Founding Director and violist of Firebird Ensemble is originally from Perth, Western Australia. She recently moved to Los Angeles from Boston where she still maintains a presence as Artistic Director/Violist of the Firebird Ensemble, Principal Violist of Opera Boston and Associate Principal Violist of the Boston Modern Orchestra Project.

In addition, Ms. Vincent has appeared as Principal Violist with numerous other East Coast ensembles, including: Emmanuel Music, Opera Aperta and Opera Unlimited. As a chamber musician Ms. Vincent has appeared with: the Apple Hill Chamber Players, Alea 3, Chameleon Ensemble, Callithumpian Consort, Dinosaur Annex, the Fromm Foundation players at Harvard, Quartet X, Winsor Music, the Aurea Ensemble and on Emmanuel Music’s Chamber Series. In Los Angeles she performs regularly with the Los Angeles Opera and has been a guest artist with the Eclipse Quartet, on the Dilijan Chamber Music Series and Monday Evening Concert Series.

Ms. Vincent has also toured extensively throughout Australia, Canada, Germany, Holland, Russia and the United States and between 1999-2003 was also violist of the Arden String Quartet. Ms. Vincent has premiered chamber and solo works by Luciano Berio, Lisa Bielawa, Donald Crockett, John Harbison, Lee Hyla, John McDonald, Joseph Maneri, Eric Moe and recorded for labels such as BMOP sound, Tzadik, New World Records, Oxingale and Steeplechase.

In 2006, Ms. Vincent was invited to join the faculty at the Longy School of Music as co-director of the new music ensemble, Longitude, and holds a double Masters Degree from New England Conservatory in Viola Performance and Music Education, where she studied with James Dunham of the Cleveland String Quartet.

Sara Bob, Piano
Hailed as “sumptuous and eloquent” by the Boston Globe, pianist Sarah Bob is an active soloist and chamber musician noted for her charismatic performances, colorful playing and diverse programming. A strong advocate for new music, she is not only a founding ensemble members of Firebird Ensemble, but also the founding director of the New Gallery Concert Series, a series devoted to commissioning and uniting new music and contemporary visual art with their creators. Recognized as a risktaker, Ms. Bob is a grant recipient of the Trust for Mutual Understanding (which recently brought her to Bulgaria to present music by living American composers), the Yvar Mikhashoff Trust for New Music, top prizewinner of the International Gaudeamus Competition, recipient of the St. Botolph Club Foundation’s Grant-in-Aid Award, received the first annual John Kleshinski Award and the New England Conservatory’s Outstanding Alumni Award.

Ms. Bob has solo and chamber music recordings on the Tzadik and BMOP/sound labels as well as Cauchemar, NLM, and Albany Records with more recording projects underway. She is an original member of many ensembles including her piano/percussion group, Primary Duo and Radius Ensemble and teaches at the Community Music Center of Boston, College of the Holy Cross and privately. 

Scot Fitzsimmons, Bass
Scot Fitzsimmons is an active chamber musician and soloist who has appeared with the Chameleon arts ensemble, Xanthos, the Firebird Ensemble and as a member of the Ah La Boom Bass Quartet. He recently premiered Mark Snyder’s Concerto for Double Bass and Orchestra.

Scot began his career recording for Virgin and Capitol records and touring the US, Europe and Australia. In 1999 he was accepted as one of only two students to complete continuing studies privately with Gary Karr in Victoria, British Columbia. Since returning to Boston in 2001, Scot has appeared as Principal Bass for the New England String Ensemble, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Cantata Singers and the Lexington Symphony. He has also appeared with Boston Ballet, Opera Boston, Rhode Island Philharmonic and Emmanuel Music.

Scot continues to perform music of all styles, he was a founding member of the Devil’s Workshop Big Band, the Aaron Binder Quartet and maintains a collaborative relationship with Paul Miller aka DJ Spooky.

Programs Offered

Firebird Ensemble performs contemporary chamber music for school audiences.