The Young Eight
Quinton I. Morris, Kayoung Nam, Timothy Peters, Chala Yancy, violins
Amber Archibald, Carl St. Jacques, viola
Caleb Jones, Tahirah Whittington, violoncelli
The Young Eight is a string octet of musicians from The Boston Conservatory, Cleveland Institute of Music, Indiana University, The Juilliard School, Manhattan School of Music, Mannes College of Music, New England Conservatory of Music and Peabody Conservatory of Music. Founded in 2002 at the North Carolina School of the arts by Artistic/Executive Director Quinton Morris, the crucially acclaimed octet is dedicated to exposing various communities to the arts through classical music. It is the only established string octet touring in the United States. In the five years since its inception, The Young Eight has established itself as one of the next generation’s most dynamic and energetic chamber ensembles presenting various performances and residency programs in New York City, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Seattle and Austin, among others.
The Young Eight performed its concert debut at the Illsley Ball Nordstrom Recital Hall at Seattle Symphony’s Benaroya Hall in June 2003 and returned for another performance in June 2005. Because of these performances, the octet was awarded a Recognition of Achievement and Proclamation by the King County Council (Washington State) and the “Best New Chamber Music Award for 2005” by the Seattle Weekly Newspaper. The octet has also collaborated with guest artists, including Metropolitan Opera soprano Indra Thomas, pianist David Lofton, poet Toyia Taylor, the Providence String Quartet, members of the Miró String Quartet and composers David N. Baker, Michael DePaul and Earl Louis Stewart
The Young Eight has been recognized in various parts of the country for its dedication to children, music and education. A series of concerts, residency programs, seminars and workshops are geared towards exposing various communities to classical music around the country. The octet has served as Artists in Residence at the North Carolina School of the Arts, Huston-Tillotson University, Blue Lake Fine arts Camp and the University of Texas-Austin’s Longhorn Music Camp. In addition, the octet also hosts a String Seminar Chamber Music Program for high school and college students each summer at Seattle University. Most recently, the octet hosted its inaugural Emerging Composers Competition for aspiring young composers.
Members of The Young Eight have won individual competitions, including the Sphinx Competition, performed with the nation’s top orchestras and given solo recitals around the world. Most recently, the octet celebrated its fifth concert season anniversary with a tour of America’s most prestigious Black colleges, universities and chamber music societies. Currently, The Young Eight became Artists in Residence at the Lee Center for the Arts at Seattle University.