Shooting Star

Local string quartet

Two Star Symphony

has a new look for summer. “We just got a new set of matching instruments,” says violinist Debra Brown. “So we’re quite in debt.” Brown says it was worth it because each was handmade by a Russian instrument maker who designed the pieces after listening to Two Star’s

Danny Elfman-esque

sound. “They are all from the same batch of wood, the same varnish, so they resonate off each other, creating this huge wall of sound,” says Brown. “Our sound is probably about three times bigger than it’s ever been.”

This works out well for Two Star Symphony, who performs at the Mink this Thursday with the Scattered Pages. The group not only performs in recital halls but also bars and rock venues where the sounds of chatter and clanking glasses aren’t discouraged. Two Star’s bravery in tackling the clubs has helped them reach unexpected audiences, including a business associate of Ministry and KMFDM, who’s trying to book them for Disneyland’s Bats Day, a yearly gathering for Goths at the theme park -- impressive for a group that Brown says started out as more or less “a joke.” “We didn’t really expect it to turn into what it’s turned into and be successful,” she says. “I didn’t even really play violin, and [now] I’ve been to both coasts.” – Dusti Rhodes

Two Star Symphony’s gig isn’t the only show happening at an unlikely venue. In our Night & Day® section, read about an Austin house band’s rare venture into a Houston watering hole, the painters and conceptual artists house-sitting Fotofest and the rainbow flag-draped event in the metropolitan area’s most well-planned, minority-free community.

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