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Davis, California

Saturday, April 20, 2024

The Aggie Arts presents Magik*Magik String Quartet

In 2011, the Mondavi Center launched its Aggie Arts Internship program with a generous grant from the Andrew Mellon Foundation. Aggie Arts interns commit for three quarters and they receive the opportunity to learn from firsthand experience the intricacies of arts administration.

Interns work with Mondavi Center staff in many different aspects of arts presenting such as programming, marketing and arts education. The interns also provide valuable feedback that goes into developing more student-specific events and programming.

On Tuesday, the Mondavi Center Arts Program will be presenting its first of many student-targeted shows to come, the Magik*Magik String Quartet at 8 p.m. in the Mondavi Center.

The Magik*Magik String Quartet is a subdivision of the San Francisco-based Magik*Magik String Quartet. It has performed with Death Cab for Cutie as well as with John Vanderslice at the San Francisco Noise Pop festival.

Annie Phillips, the manager of the Magik*Magik String Quartet who is also a trained clarinetist, further illuminated the Orchestra’s mission.

“Magik*Magik is a modular orchestra with a focus on collaboration and a mission to attract more listeners and participants to the orchestral experience,” said Phillips. “Basically, we aim to be one-stop-orchestra shopping for any artist, no matter their background in working with ‘classical’ instruments. If a band wants, for example, a string quartet or a brass trio on their record or incorporated into their live performance, we work with that artist to create arrangements and charts of their songs.”

Besides working with popular artists to incorporate orchestral sounds into their music, the Magik*Magik String Quartet has also done live shows with Sting and Chicago, among many other artists. It also participated in its first film score for a movie called Looper that will be released in September.

Wendy Lu, a junior sociology and communication major who became an Aggie Arts intern because she wanted to share her love of arts with other students, expressed that Aggie Arts chose the Magik*Magik String Quartet to play at the Mondavi Center because it wanted to make classical music more accessible to students.

“Magik*Magik String Quartet is really unique because it breaks off into modules that collaborate with really contemporary and modern groups,” said Lu. “Magik*Magik’s mission is to ‘attract new listeners and participants to the orchestral experience,’ and that was right in line with our vision: that people would see classical music as something that you are actively involved in and can engage with.”

Megan Friel, a senior art history major and Aggie Arts intern, expanded on other reasons for why Magik*Magik was a perfect fit for the Aggie Arts’ first student-specific show.

“Our internship is funded by the Mellon Foundation and strives to make classical music more accessible to a younger audience. Magik*Magik String Quartet was the perfect fit because while its members are classically-trained musicians, they break the paradigm by collaborating with indie rock and pop musicians,” said Friel.

The process of getting Magik*Magik to perform at the Mondavi began during Fall quarter and was something of a learning experience. The interns had to create a theme for the event, create a catalog, get sheet music, draft contracts and even market the show. The Magik*Magik String Quartet will be exploring the duality between chaos and order by performing pairings of music that exemplify contrasts in musical styles.

“During their performance at the Mondavi. Center Magik*Magik String Quartet will be exploring themes and patterns that have existed in music over a huge span of time. They will be playing selections responding to the theme of chaos and order ranging from canonically classical works by Hydan to indie rock pieces by Radiohead,” said Friel about what kind of music the Quartet will be playing for its May 19 show.

Lu and Friel encouraged UC Davis students to come because, besides the great music that the Quartet will be performing, there is also a post-performance reception with refreshments and student DJs.

Tickets can be purchased at the Mondavi Box Office; regular $30 and students $15. Internship applications are available for next year’s internship at the Aggie Job Link: 749651

MICHELLE RUAN can be contacted at arts@theaggie.org.


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