Moves to New York City. Joins experimental theater company.

But seriously folks, could I be more of a cliché?

As I work for and amongst the world's most incredible artists, it can be difficult to remember that I too am an artist. I'm not the most brilliant musician, and I'm certainly not the most nimble dancer, but the art I make matters. The art of making art is truly celebrated in The Dream Vault Cycle at La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club.



October 24, 2014 - November 2, 2014


Exploring the thread of creation & inspiration The Dream Vault Cycle brings together over fifty multidisciplinary artists from opposing aesthetics. Their combined talents create unique multi-media performances exploring the evolution of a creative idea and the interpretation of its seed value as it journeys from art form to art form.

Hope to see you at the show!


Can't make it to the show? You can enjoy my snarky Mind the Art Entertainment profile as a consolation gift.

Fatty Fatty No Friends - Extension and Reviews

I'm so pleased to announce that Fatty Fatty No Friends has sold out its run at the New York International Fringe Festival, and will be extending it's run in September as part of FringeNYC ENCORES.


Fatty Fatty No Friends

SOHO Playhouse 

15 Vandam St. New York, NY 

$18, no late seating 


Wednesday, September 10th, 8:00p 

Sunday, September 14th, 3:00p 

Monday, September 15th, 7:00p 

Wednesday, September 17th, 8:00p 

Thursday, September 18th, 7:00p 


Click here to purchase tickets.


"a surprisingly touching piece...""In the opening moments of Fatty Fatty No Friends,  we hear a band that evokes Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas. The music (by Christian De Gré) has a creepy-carnival vibe, and the imagery is pure Halloween."

- Sarah Andrew, Time Out New York 


"The music and direction by Christian De Gre is impressively sombre, tightly blocked, and, at times, earnestly spirited and reflective. Supporting the teasingly memorable lyrics by Joseph Reese-Anderson, the songs (the show is almost entirely sung-thru) feature complex melodic and counterpoint lines, featuring some impressive choral harmonizing and staccato wordplay by the incredibly able young ensemble. The onstage band and the supporting ensemble are dressed in Dresden Dolls-like Brechtian-punk garbs (impressive costumes by Ashley Soliman) and makeup (haunting makeup by Kate Marley). Indeed, the book by Serrana Gay, De Gre & Reese-Anderson is pure parable: Tommy could be any outcast child in America."

- Teddy Nicholas, NYTheater Now


"The star of this show is really the music, from the haunting “Fatty Fatty No Friends” recurring melody to the intricate harmonies performed by the chorus... Fatty Fatty No Friends is a musical that forces you to take childhood bullying seriously, and it does so with both humor and grace."

-Natalie Sacks,


Hope to see you at the shows in September!


Fatty Fatty No Friends @ The New York International Fringe Festival

On August 15th, Mind The Art Entertainment will present the world premiere of FATTY FATTY NO FRIENDS, a dark, spoken-word musical. It tells the story of Tommy, an overweight kid just trying to get through each day as best he can. But when the teasing and torment from the other kids becomes too much to bear, Tommy snaps and realizes: In the great lunchroom of life…bullies are delicious. 

The New York International Fringe Festival: 

Fatty Fatty No Friends

Flamboyan Theatre at the Clemente 

107 Suffolk St. (Rivington & Delancey Streets) 

$18, no late seating 

Friday, August 15th, 7:00p - SOLD OUT

Sunday, August 17th, 12:00p - SOLD OUT 

Wednesday, August 20th, 7:30p 

Thursday, August 21st, 7:15p 

Saturday, August 23rd, 3:00p 

Shows are selling out fast! Click here for tickets to purchase tickets in advance.

Directed and Composed by Christian De Gre Lyrics by Joseph Reese Anderson Based on the Book by Serrana Gay Associate Director: R. Patrick Alberty Musical Director: Aaron Butler Costume Design and Illustrations by Ashley Soliman Makeup Design: Kate Marley Photographer: Rachel Esterday Stage Manager: Priya Iyer Produced by De Gre, Alberty, Paganetti & Gay

Starring: Jason Sofge, Mallory Campbell, Malcolm Jenkins Yancey, Mia Moretti Thomas, Vinnie Urdea, Emily Brewster, Isaac Harold, Jessica Rose Futran, Caroline Wilson, Kelsey Flynn, Taylor Lane Ross, Aaron Butler, Darcie Kozlowski, Jeffrey Hodes and Mattie Kaiser.

Debut of Sound Narcissist


December 29th, 2013, 7:00pm The Waypost - 3120 N. Williams, Portland FREE, all ages


January 11th, 2014, 2:00pm Private Residence - New York, NY FREE, all ages

Mattie Kaiser, viola Aaron Butler, piano


Classical Revolution PDX's former 'fearless leader,' violist Mattie Kaiser, returns to Portland for her debut recital with pianist Aaron Butler. Kaiser and Butler formed the duo "Sound Narcissist" after Kaiser moved to New York City in March of 2013. They are eager to perform a program of works by old heroes, teachers, and friends.


Program to include:

JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH Sonata No.1 for Viola da Gamba in G major, BWV 1027 (1720)

ANNE FARBER Variations of Light (1987)

DARIUS MILHAUD La Bruxelloise from "Quatre Visages" for Viola and Piano, Op. 238 (1943)

MAURICE RAVEL Valses nobles et sentimentales (1911)

SCOTT ORDWAY Viola Sonata, "The Dreams We Dream for the City of Roses" (2010) (written for Mattie Kaiser, west coast premier)

The Revolution Beckons

Brett Campbell has contributed a fantastic article on Classical Revolution for the San Francisco Classical Voice.

I'm so honored that he let me have the last word:

Kaiser thinks the movement’s greatest impact lies ahead. “Five years ago, I didn’t think it was going to have this kind of effect nationally, globally, at all levels of classical music performance. I’m optimistic. People who are within the mainstream classical music industry now have an understanding that the stodginess of classical music presentation for the last 100 years or so has to change.” Thanks in part to Classical Revolution, “everybody is aware of this now, and I’m pretty excited to see where it’s going to go."

Click here to read the complete article.


Mister Helmet

"The most dangerous guests...? Semioticians, those people who drive the cars with the signs that say 'wide load' on the highway ahead of the truck that's actually carrying the wide load, and classical musicians."  

See why Leo Daedalus is afraid of violists. (namely, me)





Classical Revolution - The Conference

My favorite question/answer phrase:"How did you meet?" "Classical Revolution." The amazing amount of friends, chamber ensembles, significant relationships, and backpacking companions that have come out of Classical Revolution is immeasurable. It just goes to show, the momentum behind this is no accident, Classical Revolution truly is a movement of like-minded amazing individuals coming together to change the system.

Finding time to write has been an excruciating challenge ever since moving to NYC, and for a conference recap I am going to cop out and rely on my colleagues for their statements:



The following comes from the State of the Revolution article published by Brett Campbell on Oregon ArtsWatch on July 6, 2013.

About nine other directors from other Classical Revolution chapters met to exchange ideas and plan the revolution’s next phase. They shared success stories and concert models, fundraising strategies and outreach endeavors and more. CRPDX board member Michael Hsu, a composer and violinist, and executive director Christopher Corbell, a composer and multi-instrumentalist (as well as occasional electric-guitar thrashing Mozart impersonator) told ArtsWatch what they saw at the revolution.

American Idol Model?

Hsu said the conference gave him a national perspective on Portland’s revolution, which is distinguished from the others by, among other things, its theme events (like Decomposing Composers on Halloween and Bach-sing Day after Christmas) and Classical Jam sessions rather than prepared performances.

Portland has recently added contemporary music to its menu, which could turn into a transformative development in contemporary music, yoking the organization’s democratizing of classical music to the creative element of new music, which not only gives composers an affordable way of getting their music performed much more frequently than before, but also connects CR’s younger, broader audiences to contemporary music, a nexus that could benefit both listeners (who gain access to the refreshing relevance of contemporary composition) and composers (who can reach a broad audience of general music lovers, not just the relatively narrow niche of classical music geeks, new music enthusiasts, and academics who generally populate new music concerts). It also prevents Classical Revolution from suffering the same museum mentality that’s slowly draining classical music of listeners and contemporary relevance. CRPDX also sponsors a composition competition in which composers write new works for string quartet.

But Portland’s isn’t the only chapter to embrace new music. “Phoenix has an interesting take on the competition contest,” Hsu explains. “They model after American Idol. They call it Comp Comp.” Rather than making every composer write a string quartet, as CRPDX does now, composers draw five names of willing instrumentalists out of a hat, and can throw out one of the names – producing a random instrumental combo for they have four weeks to write music. At the contest itself, each finalist’s work is played twice before a panel of judges sitting at the front of the stage, while the Classical Revolution president acts as MC/translator between performers, judges, and audience. The panel can criticize or offer advice to the performers, and at the end, the audience and judges vote, and the winners get to have their pieces performed by Classical Revolution that season.

The chapters in Phoenix and Chicago have also innovated in audience outreach efforts that Portland can learn from, including instrumental petting zoos, incorporating food trucks at outdoor events, and so on. And Chicago’s chapter brought musicians from Tunisia and performed with them in an east meets west concert.

The various chapters – nearing 40, including branches in Europe – are also organized in different ways, Hsu said. Portland and Chicago Classical Revolution are nonprofit organizations that hold periodic fundraisers and do public outreach as part of the nonprofit mission. Phoenix’s group, on the other hand, is a for-profit entity supported by a Tempe museum. “They’re in a sense freer by not having to worry about the bottom line, but at the same time, they’re tied to the history museum’s mission,” Hsu explained.

Which model is better? As with any adaptive response, it depends on local circumstances. “We agreed each chapter has its own model that’s going to work differently because of the different local culture and arts organizations in each particular city,” Hsu said. “That’s why we’re moving toward an open forum model, rather than dictating that ‘Classical Revolution should look like this everywhere.’”

Open Source

Hsu was referring to another hot topic on the conference agenda. Although groups at Classical Revolution’s stage of development often move toward uniformity, hierarchy, maybe even establishing a governing body, the directors seem to be embracing Corbell’s proposal to create an open source platform, hosted at, that will allow the various chapters to share arrangements, fundraising and promotional strategies, concert ideas and more on an ongoing basis, not just at these annual meetings.

“The second Classical Revolution conference delivered the biggest thing on my wish-list,” Corbell says. “I’m really happy that we were able to move away from insular, private communication and organizing toward a very transparent, open-source ‘bazaar’ model. We are in the early days of a soft launch of a website where the conference attendees will be trying out online boards, catching any configuration bugs and starting a few early discussions. Once the beta period is over, the site will be opened up to anyone who wants to collaborate and contribute to the movement–any individual or ensemble or organization.”

Corbell’s effort reflects how Classical Revolution suits the 21st century much better than many of its classical music predecessors. In a paper presented at an April conference at Lewis & Clark College convened by musicology professor (and one-time Portland rock musician) Marianna Richey, Stanford University’s Nate Sloan noted that “Classical Revolution is redrawing a centuries-old map of the musical city. Rather than classical music emanating from one sole beacon, the concert hall, a decentralized, rhizomic network of “serious sound” emerges throughout the city.” Sloan pointed out how old-line institutions like the symphony and opera tend to resemble mid-century Detrois’ top-down Industrial Age model, while Classical Revolution, born in San Francisco, reflects a more decentralized, Silicon Valley perspective.

This “let a thousand flowers bloom’ philosophy,” however, doesn’t mean that there’s no room for cooperation among chapters. The directors discussed the notion of Classical Revolutionaries touring to various other chapters’ cities, and possibly taking the Composers Competition national – with winners from different cities competing against each other and the winning entry getting played at the national conference.

Hsu came away with an encouraging impression of the state of the revolution. ”It’s very alive and growing very fast,” Hsu says. “A lot of these chapters just started in the last year or two and they’re already building a huge following and showing a huge commitment to it. It was so inspiring to see so many people who are just scraping by as musicians still dedicating their lives to bringing classical music to the community.”


I'm about to turn 30. My first instinct was to write everyone I know that lives on the east coast and invite them to a party that celebrates all things Mattie.... and then I realized that I had that party a few months ago.

When I left Portland my dearest friends threw me an amazing going away party. There was chamber music, speeches, baby ketten karaoke, and lots of general waypost-cocktail-induced merriment.

For the last week I've been reflecting on milestones and how we celebrate them. We throw huge birthday and new year's eve parties, but how often do our lives actually change in those moments?

The milestones happen in-between birthdays.

I knew I had to do something huge before I turned 30. I knew I had to move to NYC. And now that I'm here, turning 30 just feels like another Sunday with homemade enchiladas.

But leaving Portland, leaving my best friends and family, changing careers, and going off into the unknown with everyone's blessings... that is a celebration far more meaningful than a birthday bash!

Some of my favorite moments included...

PAYBACK. My mother demanded that I perform Bach at my own party, so I got her back by demanding that she sing Bruce Springsteen's "Born to Run" for her karaoke debut.

TOASTS. The "fearless leader" elect - Christopher Corbell - put the whole bash together and started off the speeches.

SINGING & DANCING. The Dalcroze dorks got down to Bon Jovi's "You Give Love a Bad Name".

(click here the entire photo set, taken by the very talented Gary Stallsworth)


HEART-SHATTERINGLY-CREATIVE GIFTS. Like this amazing painting by my violin student, Alysse Kerr.

And the song "Our Hearts Belong to Mattie"  that Toby Loftus created and performed with Gulchin Tarabus. (while the assemblage sang along)

Oh Portland, if you think the homesickness hasn't kicked in yet, you are beyond mistaken. I love and miss you. Thanks for throwing me such a great party!!! I'm loving my new life in New York and have settled in with all of the confidence that YOU gave me.

And you, New York City, I'm turning 30 on Sunday and you are most welcome to come over for homemade enchiladas.



This week I started my new job as Program & Travel associate at Opus 3 Artists. There has been a lot to learn and to adapt to in a very short period of time, including the following concepts: Rush hour Clocking in Cubicles Business Casual Department Meetings Windows Software Casual Fridays Payday Weekends (SO EXCITING!)

Which you all know, is not exactly how I roll -- but amazingly, I love it. Because my job is to assist the following world-class artists with their program and travel logistics:

Adele Anthony Brooklyn Rider Renaud Capucon Hung-Kuan Chen Barry Douglas James Ehnes Vilde Frang Miriam Fried Kahan Kalhor Gidon Kremer Kuok-Wai Lio Gabriela Montero Peng-Peng Gong Gil Shaham Kyoko Takezawa Daniil Trifonov Krystian Zimerman Itamar Zorman Vienna Boys Choir

Say, for instance, you're going to check out James Ehnes with the Oregon Symphony next weekend, you can know that I coordinated a concise itinerary for James to help make that happen. There's so much going on behind the scenes to make sure an amazing artist can just do his/her thing -- now get out there and support them!