The Mallarmé Chamber Players is a flexible ensemble of professional musicians based in Durham, North Carolina, whose mission is to enrich the lives of the community through outstanding chamber music. The ensemble distinguishes itself by its innovative educational programs, its commitment to creative collaboration with other organizations, its creation of significant new work and its dedication to serve a diverse population.
Created in 1984 by musicians Jane Hawkins and Anna Ludwig Wilson working with poet and arts administrator Margaret DeMott, the ensemble's name comes from Stéphane Mallarmé, the 19th-century French poet and philosopher who believed that true art is created through a unity of music, dance, literature and the visual arts. In keeping with their namesake, Mallarmé performances are often interdisciplinary and have been praised by critics and audiences as innovative, eclectic and of the highest artistic quality.
With the most gifted artists from North Carolina's Piedmont region, Mallarmé Chamber Players performs programs that include rarely heard works from the traditional chamber music repertoire which celebrate the diversity in our community by featuring the music of African-American, Asian, Latino, Indian, Middle Eastern and women composers. Mallarmé has commissioned over 25 new works by American composers. They have created new contours in the landscape of chamber music through partnerships with artists of many different disciplines. Through their eclectic education programs they have developed a new model for community-based arts organizations.
For Mallarmé’s 25th anniversary season in 2008-09, Suzanne Rousso, violist and former orchestra administrator, took the helm as the new artistic director of the ensemble.