Musers & Performers

Performances are an integral part of the Tennessee Arts Academy experience. From the opening Overture Celebration to the final Finale Luncheon, a diverse group of artists and performing groups are featured at every Arts Academy event. Regional theatre, dance and music soloists and ensembles are showcased during a daily thirty-minute presentation in the Massey Performing Arts Center. On Sunday and Wednesday evenings a world-class artist is chosen to perform for TAA participants. The Belmont Mansion tour, the TAA art exhibitions, the TAA Carnival, Vendor Fair and Artist Market, and special event functions each include local artists as part of their program.

Please check back regularly for updates and information about the 2018 Tennessee Arts Academy.

Time for Three
String Trio

July 8 - 4:00 PM
Massey Performing Arts Center


The groundbreaking trio Time for Three (Tf3) transcends traditional classifications and categories by incorporating elements of classical, country western, gypsy, and jazz idioms in their work. The members—violinists Nicolas (Nick) Kendall and Charles Yang and double bassist Ranaan Meyer—bring their passion for improvisation, composing, and arranging to their performances.

To date, the group has performed hundreds of engagements that have been as diverse as its music—from being the featured guest soloists on the Philadelphia Orchestra’s subscription series and playing residencies at the Kennedy Center to performing at Club Yoshi’s in San Francisco, and Christoph Eschenbach’s birthday concert at the Schleswig-Holstein Festival in Germany. Recent Tf3 highlights include the ensemble’s Carnegie Hall debut, appearances with the Boston Pops and Melbourne Symphony Orchestras, a sell-out concert at the 2014 BBC Proms, and an appearance on the ABC prime time hit show Dancing with the Stars.

Tf3’s high-energy performances are free of conventional practices, drawing instead from the members’ diverse musical backgrounds. The trio also performs its own arrangements of traditional repertoire, with Ranaan Meyer providing original compositions to complement the groups’s offerings.

In 2014, Tf3 released its debut Universal Music Classics album, Time for Three, which spent seven consecutive weeks in the top ten of Billboard Magazine’s classical crossover chart. The ensemble has also embarked on a major commissioning program to expand its unique repertoire for symphony orchestras including Concerto 4-3 by Pulitzer Prize winning composer Jennifer Higdon; Travels in Time for Three by Chris Brubeck; and Games and Challenges by William Bolcom, which was commissioned by the Indianapolis Symphony. The group’s latest project, a three-year residency with the Sun Valley Summer Symphony, includes commissions for three new works. Tf3 premiered the first of these works, Elevation: Paradise, in August 2015 and the second, Free Souls, in July 2016.

The ensemble’s television performances include appearances on ABC’s Dancing with the Stars and an Emmy-winning show Time for Three in Concert, which premiered on PBS. In 2016, Tf3 traveled throughout Europe as a highlight act of the Night of the Proms tour. 

Three Dance Selections

July 10 - 11:30 AM
Massey Performing Arts Center


FALL is a contemporary dance company using all the tools at its disposal to create work that is entertaining and inspiring. The program for the Tennessee Arts Academy will include excerpts from several pieces of work that highlight FALL’s unique blend of floor based movement that seamlessly makes its way off of the ground. One of the excerpts the group will perform is from A Bending of its Own Kind, which premiered in June 2017 at OZ Arts in Nashville. The piece is an exploration of FALL founder Rebekah Hampton Barger’s journey with severe scoliosis and chronic pain. Also included will be a duet featuring choreography by longtime company member Shelby Ring that is inspired by the quote “Love is like water. We can fall in it. We can drown in it. And we can’t live without it.” Rounding out the program will be a new piece by FALL company member Michael West, Jr., that is set to the music of Nashville-based composer and harpist Timbre, who is a frequent FALL collaborator.

Founded in 2010 and based in Nashville, FALL is a nonprofit contemporary dance company that moves on the ground, in the air, and all the spaces in between, making work that is exciting, unexpected, and blurs the lines between art and life, flying and falling. FALL’s mission is to present high quality contemporary and aerial dance that is accessible to all audiences through performances, community outreach, and artist opportunities. FALL finds and creates places where anything is possible, where the stage and the audience are anywhere and everywhere. 


Paulo Oliveira
Guitar Concert

July 12 - 11:20 AM
Massey Performing Arts Center


Paulo Oliveira is an active soloist, chamber musician, arranger, and educator who is equally at ease in the classical, jazz, and commercial worlds. Oliveira’s performance during the Academy will feature diverse musical genres—classical, Latin, and jazz, as well as popular styles. During the concert, Oliveira will be joined by Nashville musicians Todd London on percussion and Roy Vogt on bass. A native of São Paulo, Brazil, Oliveira has taught and performed in South America, Europe, and across the United States. He has won awards in competition both in Brazil and the United States, including the Villa-Lobos Conservatory, and has been awarded full scholarships to attend prestigious international festivals including the Aspen Music Festival. In 2012, he formed the Oliveira-Willett Duo with oboist Dan Willett. Together, they have performed and taught in Brazil, France, and across the United States. The duo’s first recording, Two Hemispheres, features original arrangements of works by American and Brazilian composers, including works by Oliveira himself. Their repertoire exemplifies the contrasts and pairings that are intrinsic to the duo: two generations, two styles, two countries, two cultures, and two hemispheres. Oliveira, who holds numerous academic degrees, recently joined the guitar faculty at Belmont University, where he teaches applied guitar, group seminars, and coaching ensembles.