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Barnes Ensemble Debut

Nightlife / Music / Performance / 5th Anniversary

Sunday, October 8, 7 – 10pm

The JACK Quartet.

$30; $20 members; $10 students. Collection access included.

About the Event

Don’t miss the debut performance of the Barnes Ensemble, a groundbreaking contemporary music collective with the celebrated JACK Quartet as its core. Inspired by Dr. Barnes’s unconventional approach to arranging his art collection, this opening concert program features a carefully curated array of 21st-century music, mixing cultures, instrumentations, and ensemble sizes to explore connection in sound.

Audience members are invited to spend time in the Barnes collection galleries prior to the concert. Collection access is free with your concert ticket! 

About the Barnes Ensemble

The Barnes Ensemble is a groundbreaking concert program inspired by Dr. Barnes’s unconventional wall ensembles in the permanent collection. This ensemble challenges established genres and presents musical works of different cultures and periods, with special emphasis on contemporary repertoire and its ties to past traditions.

As a resident ensemble uniquely wedded to its institution’s mission and educational goals, the Barnes Ensemble will define the Foundation as a hub for innovative programming, nurturing of talented young musical professionals, and support of living composers.

The Barnes Ensemble will debut in three parts:

October 2017: String Orchestra Debut
March 2018: Sinfonietta Debut, with addition of winds, brass, and percussion
June 2018: Full Orchestra Debut


Robert Whalen

Robert Whalen is the music director and co-artistic director of the Barnes Ensemble. Previously he served as director of the chamber orchestra at the University of Chicago, assistant c­onductor with Germany’s WDR Funkhausorchester, and conductor of the Contemporary Music Workshop at the University of Minnesota.


The Barnes Ensemble is made possible by:

About Our 5th Anniversary

From October 1 through October 23, 2017, the Barnes is celebrating its fifth anniversary on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway with a variety of special events and programs that reflect the Barnes’s commitment to community engagement. Since moving to Philadelphia in May 2012, we have welcomed more than 1.2 million visitors, sharing an unparalleled art experience with visitors from the city and from around the world.