Issue 26

Well, here we are! Today marks the last of our artistic performances for the 2018 season. But don't you worry your pretty little head, there will be plenty of opportunities to see Fifth House Ensemble before the end of the season with our multitude of educational shows happening within the coming month!



Martin Theatre, 201 St Johns Ave, Highland Park, IL 60035, USA




9:00am (Central)


Deborah's Place Residency - written by Katherine Petersen

This week we had our fourth visit at Deborah’s Place for our Spring Residency, which means that we have now covered the bulk of the material that our participants need for the final performance. Time has flown over the past four weeks, but it has been amazing fun, as always, working with many old (and some new) faces at the Rebecca Johnson Apartments! This time around, participants have been working on Graphic Scores. One of the reasons I love this medium, is that there are so many possibilities for expression: both in the way that we express sound, and in the way that we express pieces of ourselves through visual art. Over the four weeks we’ve had together so far, participants have learned the basics about notating different sounds, the realm of possibilities on our instruments, and even a bit about Degenerate Art.

As we get closer to the performance, the projects are really coming together. The participants were given a short prompt for their projects: “tell the story you want people to know about you, the part that you don’t always show on the outside.” To inspire these stories, we have been engaging in story circles in each class to practice sharing stories, and to practice listening. It has been wonderful getting to know each woman’s story, and to hear how many similarities we all share. In one of our first story circles, in which the prompt was to tell a story of a happy childhood memory, we realized as we went around the circle that everyone was sharing stories about a time spent near the water with their family, and we all had the same wonderful feelings from these memories. This past week during story circle time, the ladies shared the stories of their projects, which showed the depth and attention that each individual was giving to their projects.  One woman read a poem she composed as a part of her project titled ‘The Me You Don’t See,’ and I can say for a fact, the audience is in for a very inspiring performance on May 8th.


From the journal of Uncle Traveling Matt:

"This is one of the finest dressed gentlemen I've met in quite some time. My roommate usually wears sweatpants around so I just couldn't resist getting my photograph taken with this chap! He also is quite good at playing the clarinet."


Just for the record, we dig this song every week because how could you not?

TOP 10

  1. Degenerate Art was wonderful and we had a great time continuing the conversation with so many members of our audience!

  2. Charlene, Herine, and Katherine put on their night vision goggles for another successful performance of Americana for Ravinia.

  3. Herine and Parker had a wonderful start to our NBJ residency. We're super excited to have our first class of girls at that facility!

  4. Our partner teacher at NBJ, Ms. Rizzo, informed us that we will be having some special guests at our final performance. More info to come soon!

  5. Thanks for the coffee (and water) at the Full Ensemble meeting Herine!

  6. Congrats to Meghan on completing her education internship with us as of tomorrow! You will be missed!

  7. Special thanks to Aubrey Leaman for helping us out getting organized and selling merch at our Degenerate Art show!

  8. Happy (belated) birthday to Jessica!

  9. Eric is kicking butt and taking names with the Seward residency. Don't worry, word has it, he is not kicking the butts of the children.

  10. Parker and Deuce became rag dolls and punched each other. It was so great!


Series shows are done,

Education shows in May,

We will see you there!


When you finish your artistic performances for the season and you want to lay around and do nothing.

(Also, this might be one of my favorite videos on this blog ever)


The only way to respond to "Are you a compulsive liar?" is no.


You all can ask Melissa to explain this to you...


Is there anything better than a Wisconsin breakfast? Yep, it's a Wisconsin breakfast with a cup of beer.

Will's Northwoods Inn

Chicago, IL


One of the events that culminated with our Degenerate Art shows!


Elizandro Garcia-Montoya

You did a heck of a lot of playing in Degenerate Art and it all sounded amazing!