This year, we are thrilled to welcome Ashley Frith (viola) and Jaime Feldman (cello) to the Newport String Project as Associate Musicians! Together with EmmaLee and Ealain, they will be performing as the Newport String Project's first quartet-in-residence. As well as performing, they will be joining our teaching staff and leading new pieces of educational programming. Here they share a little bit about their backgrounds, what brought them to the Newport String Project and what they are looking forward to this year...
"My name is Ashley and I hail from Miami, Fl. It was there (aided by my Jamaican heritage) that I developed a dependency on the sun and mangoes. When I was 10 years old, my music teacher at school needed an excuse to get students to play a big, but really beautiful, instrument none of us had heard of. He told me, because I was a tall girl (but definitely not the tallest), that this was the instrument for me. And thus, my relationship with the viola began.
When not attempting to gently coexist and create with my large musical companion, I'm hopefully spending quality time with miniature humans. It is an absolute joy getting to help them comfortably and happily coexist with their music-making partners (wooden and human). Sans music, I'm hopefully eating something really tasty, that preferably came from a tree or a bush. I'm so excited to join the amazing humans of the Newport String Project this year, and equally excited to get acquainted with Aquidneck Island. I always thought that Florida aspired to be an island, but got separation anxiety."
"My name is Jaime, I am thrilled to be joining the Newport String Project this year as the cellist in residence. After attending a live chamber music performance at the Kneisel Hall Music Festival in Brooklin, ME., I was determined to play the cello. I later fell in love with chamber music as a twelve year old student at Music@Menlo festival in Palo Alto CA, captivated by a performance of the Emerson String quartet. I love playing chamber music with others, and am passionate about mentoring and teaching young children. I believe learning to collaborate is fundamental to our society, which starts with children’s education. Teaching children how to listen, have fun, and work together in a music ensemble gives them important life-long skills, and is the key to a strong and supportive community.
This fall of 2017, I am excited to be launching Newport String Project’s first pre-k program, an introduction to music making for ages three-five. I’m forward to performing for diverse audiences, and continuing to connect with and bring music to the various communities in Newport. In my free time, I enjoy running on trails, summer-time hiking in the Maine woods, picking wild flowers, trying new cheeses, conversing with every new cat or dog I meet, and traveling to new places."