Who We Are

New River Ensemble taps into the musical current of our time, presenting an integration of styles and periods of music.  As musicians and educators seasoned in classical, jazz and American folk traditions, New River moves comfortably from Brahms to Duke Ellington, from fiddle tunes to forward-thinking original music. They perform concerts, hold interactive workshops for schools and community groups, and perform original scores to old silent films.

The New River Ensemble formed at Friends Music Camp  an intense summer musical community in rural Ohio where Brendan Cooney (piano, banjo), Lisa Liske-Doorandish (cello), and Martha Hyde (clarinet, flute, saxes) have taught and played for well over a decade.  After years of summer collaborations, the three began developing concert programs, educational workshops and film scores to take on the road.  Since then, the group has performed concerts or film scores at such venues as Arts Quest Steel Stacks, Bethlehem, PA, the Jacksonville Arts Center, Floyd, VA and the Lyric Theater, Blacksburg, VA.  They have performed and/or run educational workshops at Hollins University, Roanoke, VA, Olney Friends School, Barnesville, OH, the George School, Newtown, PA and the Westtown School, West Chester, PA.

New River seeks to make music that affirms and inspires. We seek to create an educational context to encourage the practice of music as an integral part of being human:  music is for everyone!  Our seminars offer listening and playing tools that will empower your choices to engage with music in general, but also with music that is new to you as a listener, as a maker of music, as a teller of stories, and as a creative person.  New River workshops accesses the artist in everyone, and are flexibly designed for learning communities of all kinds, for children through adult, for musicians and