Palaver Strings is a Maine-based musician-led string ensemble and nonprofit organization founded in 2014. Now in its sixth season, Palaver has established itself as a forward-thinking ensemble whose mission is rooted in community and creative programming. Palaver has performed at the Kennedy Center, a celebration of the Lullaby Project at Carnegie Hall, and has toured the East and West Coasts of the United States. Palaver was Ensemble in Residence at the Boston Center for the Arts from 2017-2019, and continues a longstanding residency at Bay Chamber Concerts in Rockport, ME. This season, Palaver is a resident ensemble at the Shalin Liu Center in Rockport, MA. Equally passionate about education, Palaver has recently launched the Palaver Music Center in Portland, ME, fostering creativity and dialogue and making high-quality music education accessible to students of all backgrounds.
As a musician-led ensemble, Palaver is driven by collaborative processes, through which its Co-Artistic Directors share musical and administrative leadership. While each member of the ensemble brings unique experiences to the table, we all share a passion for taking classical music beyond the concert hall to engage with new and diverse audiences. In these personal, unconventional settings, Palaver strives to use music to address social issues, promote education and healing, and inspire peers and community to support the arts. As we prepare to open the Palaver Community Music School in Portland this fall, we hope to share these values with our students, fostering a love of music and collaboration for students of all ages and backgrounds.
What does our name mean?
Where does it come from?
Our name, "Palaver," comes from the term "palaver hut," a place of discussion and conflict resolution in Liberia. In our early days as an ensemble, we gave benefit concerts for the Liberian Education Fund and became familiar with and inspired by the term "palaver," as we are a diverse group of individuals seeking to come to a creative agreement when we make music. "Palaver" has remained central to our vision as we expand our outlook to other social causes.