Houston Friends of Chamber Music: Imani Winds

The chamber music quintet Imani Winds comes to Houston without longtime member flautist Valerie Coleman, who's out on maternity leave. Mariam Adam, the group's clarinetist, says, ''It's such a rare thing for us to be without her because we've been together for 16 years. It's strange for me to even say, ''Oh, she's not here.'' Fellow New Yorker Sato Moughalian is filling in for Coleman. ''It's been a trial by fire for her,'' Adam laughs, ''but she's doing very nicely and taking on the daunting task of replacing Valerie, of stepping into her shoes for a while.''

Coleman frequently composes for the group, as does Imani French horn player Jeff Scott. Adam says having in-house composers has helped to shape the group’s repertoire, often noted for being nontraditional. ''A wind quintet has a reputation for being rather light and fluffy, sort of classical music's easy listening. That's not what we're here for. We're trying to take our performances beyond that traditional wind quintet sound and yet keep the traditions of a wind quintet. Valerie and Jeff being composers and having us as guinea pigs, they've really expanded that range. They don't write what's expected for a wind quintet; they write what they want to hear. They do nontraditional things. It's beyond what you might think a clarinet can do; it's very soulful music with a lot of virtuosity and a lot of technical charge.''

7:30 p.m. Rice University, 6100 Main. For information, call 713-348-5400 or visit houstonfriendsofchambermusic.org. $25 to $75.
Tue., Oct. 15, 7:30 p.m., 2013

 
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