Heartland Marimba Quartet (Early Show)
The Heartland Marimba Quartet, a subsidiary of the Heartland Marimba Festival organization, officially launches in 2017. An exciting and incendiary initiative of HMF, HMQ is an ensemble of four dynamic solo performers that will premier this collaboration with a tour throughout Iowa and Minnesota. It was very important for HMQ to present to the world by doing their first tour in the heart of the heartland where HMF has been growing since 2014. The ensemble will tour the nation regularly in the spring and fall and will be in residence as the artist faculty each summer at the Heartland Marimba Festival Academy at the University of Wisconsin–Stevens Point.
The performers of this sui generis troupe come from four states; IA, IL, TX, and AZ, and are accomplished and award- winning solo players in the percussion field. Matthew Coley, HMF director, has formed this group in order to provide a strong presence and public image year-round for the Heartland Marimba Festival, but also to continue to forge a path of gainful opportunities for professional marimba players. HMQ will be the premier professional marimba quartet of the Americas, and seeks to inspire the next generation of marimba performers at the same time as being passionate about advancing the art form of modern classical marimba within many communities around the nation. There are several well- established professional percussion quartets and many marimba quartets are formed within percussion programs of university music departments, but there is yet to be an ensemble of dedicated professionals formed to solely focus on the wealth of great modern music written for four marimbas. Additionally, HMQ will concentrate all of their efforts on American composers. The composers included in their program for the 2017 season include Michael Burritt, Gordon Stout, Alex Orfaly, Neil Thornock, Sabrina Pena-Young, Scott Blasco, Steven Simpson, and Kevin Romanski.