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Chuck Holdeman


Bassoonist Chuck Holdeman originally played with Relâche from ’85 to ’95 and rejoined the ensemble in 2007. In addition to Relâche, he plays principal bassoon for the Bach Festival of Bethlehem.  Chuck is also a composer of opera, orchestral music, songs, chamber music, and music for film. In 2008, Relâche commissioned Chuck to write music to accompany Maya Deren's silent film At Land. Relâche turned to Chuck again for the 2011 PIFA Festival performances of Les Films Muets (French silent films) when he composed and conducted his accompaniment to Max fait de la photo (Max Linder). In October 2017, Relâche premiered Chuck's Sumer Redux, based on ancient texts from the Penn Museum's Sumerian cuneiform tablet collection. Mural Music (2014, for Philadelphia Mural Arts) received its second performance by Relâche in January 2018.  Chuck is currently at work on his third opera, as well as the piece Harrison Set, based on the poetry of Jeffrey Harrison, to be premiered spring 2019 by baritone Grant Youngblood and Pyxis.