“The mission undertaken by the FLUX players — Tom Chiu and Conrad Harris, violinists; Max Mandel, violist; Felix Fan, cellist — was something like tilting at windmills while mounted on tortoises and armed with feather dusters.” Steve Smith, (New York Times).

Considered the ultimate masters of Morton Feldman’s 6-hour String Quartet from 1983, David Patrick Stearns, (Philadelphia Inquirer) proclaimed, “ this  piece oozes a rarefied, spiritual air… The FLUX Quartet made all the difference…The players displayed an astounding ear for sound that made each gradation of timbre palpable."  Alex Ross (New Yorker) described FLUX's live performance as "a disorienting, transfixing experience that repeatedly approached and touched the sublime."

They have performed at Carnegie’s Zankel  Hall, the Kennedy Center, Walker Art Center, in Mexico at the Chihuahua International Arts Festival, and in Ireland at the Samuel Beckett Centenary Festival, the Kitchen in NYC, Bowerbird in Philadelphia, EMPAC, and have been heard on NPR’s All Things Considered, WNYC’s New Sounds and Soundcheck, and WFMU’s Stochastic Hit Parade. They will be making their debut at Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival. Their recordings include a new Feldman CD up and coming from MODE Records, and other composer compilations on the Tzadik, Innova, Cantaloupe, and Cold Blue Music labels.

FLUX Quartet has paved the way for all younger quartets focusing on similar repertoire,  they move between the great works of Gyorgy Ligeti, Giacinto Scelsi, John Zorn, and Iannis Xenakis to avant jazz greats such as Henry Threadgill, Oliver Lake, and Roscoe Mitchell.  They bring an equal flair to music from previous centuries. They have championed works by avant balloonist Judy Dunaway, Mathew Welch, and have also done significant work in dance, including collaborations with choreographers Shen Wei, Christopher Wheeldon, and Pam Tanowitz. FLUX actively pursues commissions, with recent grants from the American Composers Forum, USArtists International, Aaron Copland Fund, and the Meet-The-Composer Foundation.  The group also explores new voices from its numerous college residencies throughout the US, including Wesleyan, Dartmouth, Williams, Princeton, Rice, and the College of William and Mary.

The spirit to expand stylistic boundaries is a trademark of the FLUX Quartet.  Greatly influenced by the all-embracing philosophy of the Fluxus movement, violinist Tom Chiu founded FLUX with a similar aesthetic approach, in search of a living art for all people with an "anything-goes, do-it-yourself" spirit.   To that end, FLUX has always been committed to projects of unique vision that defy aesthetic categorization, such as the monumental work by Feldman.

 
A noted champion of new music, violinist and composer Tom Chiu has performed over 200 premieres worldwide by influential composers such as Virko Baley, Julio Estrada, Oliver Lake, Alvin Lucier, Roscoe Mitchell, Somei Satoh, and Henry Threadgill, among many others.  He has also worked closely with free jazz innovator Ornette Coleman, with whom he appeared at the Walker Arts Center in 2005. His extensive discography includes recordings for the Chesky, Innova, Koch, Mode, Sombient, and Tzadik labels.  In a cross-discipline context Chiu has created new mixed-media works with choreographers Pam Tanowitz and Shen Wei, audio-video artists Phill Niblock and Elise Kermani, sculptor Ernesto Neto, conceptual balloonist Judy Dunaway, and director Lee Breuer from avant theater troupe Mabou Mines.  He has dedicated new works to Joan La Barbara, Bobby Few, Max Mandel, the Downtown Ensemble, SLAVE PIANOS, and the OpenEnded Group, and these works have been premiered at experimental venues such as Roulette, STEIM Amsterdam, Experimental Intermedia, and the Museum of the Moving Image.  He has also produced or designed sonic ambiance for special events, including gala openings at Park Avenue Armory, the Noguchi Museum, and the New York Times Building (designed by Renzo Piano).  His extensive film credits further showcase his creative versatility: as composer, fiddler, voice-over artist, and actor (The Man With One Red Shoe, with Tom Hanks).  Chiu holds degrees in chemistry and music from Yale and Juilliard, and has presented concerts and workshops at numerous universities, including Williams, Dartmouth, Wesleyan, and William and Mary.   He appears frequently as a commentator on contemporary music and culture, and has served as panelist and consultant in a variety of artistic formats.  
 
 
 
Violinist Conrad Harris has performed new works for violin at the Darmstadt Ferrienkürse für Neue Musik, Gulbenkian Encounters of New Music, Radio France, Warsaw Autumn, and New York's Sonic Boom Festival. In addition to being a member of the Flux Quartet, he is concertmaster of the New York based S.E.M. Ensemble and the Ostravska Banda, founded in the Czech Republic. He has performed and recorded with such artists as DJ Spooky, Jean-Claude Risset, and Tiny Tim, as featured violinist on his final recording "Prisoner of Love." A solo CD featuring premiers by Alvin Lucier, David Behrman, Robert Ashley, and Gordon Mumma will soon be released on Mode Records. He has also recorded for Asphodel, Vandenburg, CRI, and Vinyl Retentive Records.  
 
 
 

Canadian violist Max Mandel is one of the most acclaimed and active chamber musicians of his generation. Comfortable in many styles and genres, Mr. Mandel's current group affiliations in addition to FLUX include The Caramoor Virtuosi, The Silk Road Ensemble, The Metropolitan Museum Artists in Concert, The Jupiter Symphony Chamber Players, The Kirby String Quartet, The Smithsonian Chamber Players, The Knights, Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra, and I Furiosi Baroque Ensemble. Private studies at the University of Toronto and the Juilliard School were with Steven Dann and Samuel Rhodes. Mr. Mandel is a fan of all kinds of music from Mozart to Feldman to Ghostface and considers himself very fortunate to have collaborated with great artists in many genres from Vera Beths to Ornette Coleman to Kirk Hammett of Metallica. Mr. Mandel plays on a 1973 Giovanni Battista Morassi generously loaned to him by Lesley Robertson of the St. Lawrence Quartet. He resides in Brooklyn, NY.

 
 
 
 

Felix Fan's versatility has made him one of the most sought after cellists of his generation. As a chamber musician, he has performed with Yo-Yo Ma, Gil Shaham, and Janos Starker, in venues such as Carnegie Hall, The Kennedy Center, Musikverein and Royal Festival Hall. Fan's interest in contemporary music has led to collaborations with today's leading composers including George Crumb, Tan Dun, Oliver Knussen, Kaija Saariaho, and Charles Wuorinen. Appearances with the Bang on a Can All-Stars has allowed Fan to work with artists as diverse as Philip Glass, Meredith Monk, Terry Riley, and Lee Ranaldo of Sonic Youth. In 1998, Fan founded Muzik3, a performance series and commissioning foundation dedicated to the advancement of modern music with an emphasis on integrating theater, dance, and video. Muzik3 led to the formation of cello/percussion/piano trio Real Quiet, which has premiered over 20 works and recorded music by Marc Mellits (Endeavour Records) and David Lang (Naxos). In 2005, Fan performed a series of radio plays written by acclaimed screenwriters Charlie Kaufman and the Coen Brothers, starring actors Steve Buscemi, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Meryl Streep. Fan has also worked with innovative choreographers Karole Armitage, Shen Wei, and Christopher Wheeldon.