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Quintet blends musical genres in ‘accessible’ and ‘fun’ shows

Sybarite5 is known for its genre-crossing music and its sophomore album, “Outliers.”

Sybarite5 is known for its genre-crossing music and its sophomore album, “Outliers.”

Sybarite5 spans the spectrum of music from Elgar to Radiohead.

Chatter Sunday announces the return of the eclectic quintet to Las Puertas Event Center on July 10.

The Ravel-meets-rock musicians gestated at the Aspen Music Festival seven years ago, Chatter assistant artistic director James Shields said. A festival tradition finds musicians performing on the street in front of the town’s Paradise Bakery.

“They ended up gaining this huge following playing outside the ice cream shop,” Shields said. Since then, the group has released two CDs, including its most recent collection, “Outliers,” featuring new music commissioned by the musicians.

“It’s (about) trying to break barriers between genres,” Shields said. “They like composers who aren’t afraid to mix styles with their favorite alternative group.

“It’s definitely more accessible, a little grittier. They put on very fun shows.”

“Outliers” comprises 11 pieces by such celebrated young composers as Andy Akiho, Kenji Bunch and Dan Visconti.

Sybarite5 is Sarah Whitney, Sami Merdinian, violins; Angela Picket, viola; Laura Metcalf, cello; and Louis Levitt, double bass.

“They have a rare combination of this commitment to craft and a fun-loving sense of performing,” Shields said.

During a recent Library of Congress performance, the musicians played violins from the institution’s Stradivarius collection.

This week’s Chatter Sunday poet is former teacher Merimée Moffitt. She performed poetry at Fixed and Free, a reading she co-founded, the Range in Bernalillo, the Duende Series in Placitas and a number of summer readings at the Elena Gallegos Open Space. Her most recent work is a memoir titled “Free Love, Free Fall: Scenes from the West Coast Sixties.”

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