Hailed by Time Out New York as a "gorgeously subtle trio” and The Cleveland Plain Dealer as a “gem made in heaven and polished to perfection,” Brooklyn-based JANUS was formed in 2002 with the goal of presenting and creating new repertoire for the flute/harp/viola trio through commissioning projects and works-in-process collaborations. Named after Janus, the Roman god whose double-faced image peers into the past and future, the trio maintains the established tradition for the instrumentation while breaking new ground into unexplored sonic frontiers. Beginning with Debussy and including Toru Takemitsu, Harald Genzmer, André Jolivet, Sophia Gubaidulina and Kaija Saariaho, composers have been allured by this intriguing combination of something bowed, something blown and something plucked.
To date, janus has added over twenty new pieces to the trio library through individual submissions and collaborative projects with universities. From its inception to the present, janus has collaborated with the composition departments from Princeton, Colgate, New York, Columbia and Cornell Universities. Not limiting themselves to only universities, janus has an ongoing relationship with the Aspen Music Festival and School annually presenting a week of activities for over 1000 children from grade school through high school.
Within New York City, janus has been featured at halls including Symphony Space, Joe’s Pub, The Tank, Roulette, BAM Café, The Stone, Weill Recital Hall, and the Look and Listen Festival. Other group credits include performances at the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage, the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Spark Festival (Minneapolis), Rocky River Chamber Music Series (OH), the Glenwood Springs Center for the Arts (CO) and the Dame Myra Hess Recital Series (Chicago).
janus released their 2010 debut album i am not on New Amsterdam Records, featuring original compositions by Jason Treuting, Anna Cylne, Angelica Negron, Cameron Britt, Caleb Burhans, and Ryan Brown. The album was praised as “a beguiling new CD” in Time Out New York and “intricate and fantastical” by NPR’s Deceptive Cadence blog. janus can also be heard performing Andrew Mckenna Lee’s piece “the dark out of the nighttime” on his New Amsterdam album, Gravity and Air.