Michele Kelly - flutes
Michele Kelly, Relâche Ensemble flutist since 1998, also served as the ensemble’s co-Artistic Director from 2004 through 2018. She appears on the group’s four most recent recordings: Press Play, Eight Point Turn, Kyle Gann's The Planets, and Comix Trips. She also appears on the Centaur Records discs Inverno Azul and Flute Loops, featuring the chamber music of Cynthia Folio, alongside whom she has been a featured soloist in Folio’s double concerto Winds of Change. A versatile performer in a variety of settings, Michele regularly appears with numerous small and large ensembles throughout the region when not with Relâche. At the University of Pennsylvania, she is the founder, Director and Conductor of Penn Flutes, an ensemble of over fifty performing members, with regular performances and educational outreach programs throughout the region, a model she also maintains within an extensive private teaching studio. She received her MMus from the University of Michigan, where she also received a Specialist's degree in Chamber Music Performance. The daughter of noted abstract expressionist artist James Groff, Michele lives in the Fairmount section of Philadelphia with her family.
Bob Butryn - Clarinet / saxophone
Bob Butryn studied clarinet at Temple University. He freelances as a woodwind doubler (clarinet, sax, and flute) performing with numerous classical, jazz, and rock ensembles in the Philadelphia area. Bob is also a professional dancer. He performs duo dance shows under the name “Crazy Rhythm, Fancy Feet” with his longtime dance partner Eva Brothers. His latest project is a music and dance show comprised of Bob’s original pop tunes, centered around a tune written to the poem by Elizabeth Barrett Browning, “How Do I Love Thee.” This show includes many musical styles such as swing, salsa, samba, and rock, as well as dance routines and skits.
Lloyd Shorter - OBOE/english horn
Lloyd Shorter has performed with Relâche since 1990 and acted as the co-artistic director from 2003-2018. As a soloist he has performed in consultation with many major composers, including John Corigliano, Joan Tower, and Simon Bainbridge. Lloyd’s performances with Relâche have included the Prague Spring Festival, concerts in Berlin, Vienna, Warsaw, Cracow, Amsterdam, Vilnius, Seattle, Phoenix, New York City, and Venezuela. Lloyd has been a member of the Delaware Symphony for over 40 years. He recently retired as a member of the faculty of the University of Delaware where many of his courses emphasized contemporary music. He has been an innovator in musical and creative applications of Internet2.
Chuck Holdeman - BASSOON
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.
Amy Leonard - Viola
Philadelphia native Amy Leonard received viola performance degrees from the Oberlin Conservatory and the Manhattan School of Music, and has studied baroque viola at Oberlin’s Baroque Performance Institute. Principal teachers have included Leonard Mogill, Jeffrey and Lynne Ramsey Irvine, Karen Ritscher, Charles Bruck, and Jane Starkman.
Though much of her career has been devoted to the teaching and performing of orchestral music, Amy is also an active recitalist and chamber musician, participating in a number of music festivals in North America and Europe such as Aspen, Banff, Spoleto USA, and Mostra Mozart in Venice, Italy. Amy also enjoyed a decade-long relationship with the Pierre Monteux School in Hancock, Maine, first as student, then as administrator and director of the school’s chamber music series. Past orchestral positions have been with the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, the New World Symphony (Miami Beach, FL), and as assistant principal violist with the National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland, where Amy performed with the internationally recognized contemporary ensemble Nua Nos, or “New Noise”. Amy taught viola at Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond, Louisiana for four years; her students are now members of the Mississippi and Baton Rouge Symphonies.
Currently Amy maintains a large and lively studio teaching viola and violin at the Shipley School in Bryn Mawr, PA and at home. Recent recital appearances have been at Rowan University, Bryn Mawr Presbyterian Church, Calvary Episcopal Church in Wilmington, DE, and at the Philadelphia Ethical Society. She is also very much in demand as a free lance musician, performing as a member of the contemporary ensemble Relâche, the Delaware Symphony Orchestra, and the baroque ensembles Tempesta di Mare and Brandywine Baroque. Amy also performs frequently with other ensembles such as the Pennsylvania Ballet Orchestra, Philly Pops, and in recent years has been a guest artist with groups such as the Copeland String Quartet, La Bernardinia baroque ensemble, and Melomanie.
Chris Coyle - Bass
Chris Coyle is a bassist, composer and music educator based in Philadelphia, PA. As a very active performer, he can be found in an array of musical settings including Jazz (with his own Outside Sound ensemble, and with noted musicians such as John Swana, Behn Gillece, Doug Hirlinger, Matt Scarano, V. Shayne Frederick and others), Americana (Noggin Hill, Lady Bird), Experimental (Son Step, NotSoSilentCinema, Rhinoceri Trio) and World Music (Oscuro Quintet, Cunjunto Philadelphia, Ensemble Novo). As a composer, Chris has been recognized by the American Composers Forum, the McKnight Foundation and the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. Chris has performed and done workshops all over the Midwest and Northeast US, in Canada, Germany, and South Korea.
Venues performed at include The Kimmel Center, Carnegie Hall, The Philadelphia Museum of Art, Fringe Arts, The Painted Bride, Johnny Brenda’s, Boot and Saddle, The International House, Philadelphia Magic Gardens, World Cafe Live, Rockwood Music Hall (NYC), Joe’s Pub (NYC), The Somerville Armory, The Brattle Theater, Underground Arts and many many more…
Chris has spent much of his time sharing his musical experiences through private lessons, classroom teaching, clinics, workshops and residencies. He currently resides in the Germantown neighborhood of Philadelphia and in his free time he enjoys things like hiking, ethnic food hunting, and brainstorming.
Ron Stabinsky - PIANO
Ron Stabinsky recently released his debut album, Free for One, the culmination of more than a decade of evolving his improvised solo language. It received four stars in DownBeat and tied for number one debut of the year in the 2016 NPR Music Jazz Critics Poll. In addition to solo piano improvisation, he enjoys working on music in stylistically diverse situations throughout the United States and Europe with a variety of other musicians and ensembles. These include free-improvising saxophonist Jack Wright, lead trumpet legend Dave Stahl, bass trombone virtuoso David Taylor, and NEA Jazz Master David Liebman. Festival appearances include Newport Jazz Festival, North Sea Jazz Festival (Netherlands), Moers Festival (Germany), Jazzfestival Saalfelden (Austria), Jazz Jamboree Festival (Poland), and Jazz and More Festival Sibiu (Romania). He is currently a regular performing member of the groups Mostly Other People Do the Killing, Relâche, the Meat Puppets, and the Peter Evans Ensemble.
Wesley Morton - Percussion
Bio coming soon!
Erica Ball - executive director
Erica Ball is a Philadelphia based composer, violinist, pianist and educator with a special interest in bringing contemporary music to new audiences. She received her PhD in music composition from the University of Pennsylvania where she studied with Anna Weesner, Jim Primosch, and Jay Reise. She holds a BA in music from Bard College, where she studied with Joan Tower. In addition to working for Relâche, Erica regularly adjuncts at area universities, and maintains a private teaching studio in the suburbs of Philadelphia. Her works have been played by numerous ensembles including the Da Capo Chamber Players, Colorado Quartet, Arneis Quartet, Daedalus Quartet, pianist Blair McMillen, International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE), and the American Symphony Orchestra. Her works have been heard across the country in Chicago, Boston, New York, Baltimore, and Philadelphia, and internationally in Germany and New Zealand.
Relâche Board Members
Jean Brody - Board President