Making new music accessible and enjoyable is our passion. We strive to bridge the gap between new classical music and today’s popular culture audience. The members of the Birch Crescent Duo (also known as the BCD) are violist Sterling Tyler from Myrtle Beach, SC and percussionist Colin Deay from Albany, NY. The BCD formed during our time at the Eastman School of Music in the winter of 2011. At that time we did not have a name but began the process of performing and improvising for friends and family. Early on we saturated ourselves in contemporary classical music while playing table tennis and began to think, “Why does the world not recognize this music as being good?” We determined that the music is good but sometimes lacks accessibility or is extremely difficult to listen to. Thus our goal is to make new music accessible and enjoyable.
In June 2012 we commissioned our first work from composer Weijun Chen called, “A Wanderer’s Farewell.” This first commissioned work is definitely the most artsy in our repertoire list but it is partly responsible for the direction of the Birch Crescent Duo. His work challenged us to explore the extremes of musical sonority, importance of stage presence, and challenged us to frequently leave our comfort zone (as Sterling sings a song and plays percussion, we both whistle, and even act). Since our first performance of Weijun Chen’s work we have successfully commissioned several other works that were well received by the students and faculty of the Eastman School of Music.
Lately, the Birch Crescent Duo has focused on serving the city of Rochester in a profound way by visiting Senior homes, performing for the Fallen Officers Ball at the Convention Center in downtown Rochester, and even performing for the Links Inc. Luncheon in May 2013. In addition to our endeavors as performers we strive to focus on educating music lovers, through lectures and our website, in the relevancy of new music, keys of chamber music and how it can apply to everyday life, and the art of surviving as young professional musician amongst others. Finally, we love teaching students the foundation of music and making music with others. Private instruction from our teachers proved to enhance our technique but more importantly helped us to find our musical selves. The Birch Crescent Duo shares that reality with their students.