Trillium Salon Series hosts free events at Crystal Bridges that bring music, art closer to the listener

Trillium Salon Series hosts free events at Crystal Bridges that bring music, art closer to the listener

Audiences, get ready to convene around sound and visual art. Trillium Salon Series has a new season of shows planned once again at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville.

“Trillium’s goal is to invite the community and build connection through putting together concerts that are in unusual settings,” explains Katy Henriksen, founder of the Trillium Salon Series. “What better place to do that than Crystal Bridges, where there’s this amazing art collection that is a part of the concert, and also to bring into the fold all these casual listeners?”

The Trillium Salon series aims to break down barriers between artists and the audience by allowing them to come closer to the music. Last year Trillium hosted events such as the “In C,” a performance of Terry Riley’s 1964 minimalist composition alongside Mark Rothko and Andy Warhol paintings at Crystal Bridges. For the performance, listeners were able to physically walk around the 38 musicians, who played a wide variety of instruments from accordion to electric guitar to trombone.

Trillium also partners with organizations such as Ozark Free Music Society, a Fayetteville-based collective which meets monthly to perform improvised music for randomly assigned ensembles. Trillium also brings in musicians from outside the region to improvise, perform and commune with audiences in spaces outside of traditional venues.

“I started Trillium to draw more listeners into music that maybe is undervalued or thought of as highbrow or [that] it’s got to be in the concert hall,” Henriksen adds. Taking away the trappings of the concert hall performance fosters connection between the audience and the artist, she says.

For this year’s series, Henriksen says that she is focusing on how musicians can connect with the art that they are performing alongside. She adds that each performance will still be very artist-driven, but they are honing in on six months rather than the full year.

As always, she says that her aim is to provide a wide array of styles for listeners to connect with.

“I think if you look at the series as a whole, you’ll see a lot of different types of performers, a lot of different types of sounds. We’ve got straight-up classical music, then we’ve got 20th- and 21st-century minimalist music. We’ve got a violist improviser who will be performing. Then we also have analog synth trumpeter [Sarah Belle Reid] who recently moved to Northwest Arkansas. … She does analog synth workshops, and she has an insanely large following of people.”

There’s also a performance planned by Untight, the brainchild of Fayetteville-based artist and musician Sam King, that will be in the James Turrell “Skyspace” on Aug. 3.

“He is actually writing the music to coincide with what the lighting will be like in that space at that time. So it’s very specifically honed into that setting and that piece of art,” Henriksen adds.

Each concert begins at 6 p.m. on the first Thursday of each month. As always, the shows hosted by Trillium at Crystal Bridges are free and open to all ages. Keep up with Trillium at Keep up with Henriksen on her Sound Off podcast at



Trillium Salon Series

Performances start at 6 p.m. on the first Thursday of the month at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville. Admission is free.

May 4 — Ozark Wind Quartet and Fayette Junction Bassoons in the Early American Gallery.

June 8 — C4 clarinet quartet performs works by women composers in the Early American Gallery.

July 6 — Kansas City-based violist and improviser Christina Silvius performs in the Contemporary Gallery.

Aug. 3 — Untight performs music composed specifically to coincide with the lighting inside the James Turrell “Skyspace.”

Sept. 7 — Pianist D. Riley Nicholson presents rarely heard minimalist works of the 20th and 21st century in the Early American Gallery.

Oct. 5 — Analog synths and improv trumpeter Sarah Belle Reid performs in the Contemporary Gallery.


Categories: Galleries