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Borderlands Ensemble

The Borderlands Ensemble was formed in 2017 by Johanna Lundy, Ellen Chamberlain, Sarah Toy, Ann Weaver, and Robert Chamberlain. After many years working together in an orchestral setting, we were ready to explore new concert formats and to cultivate relationships with our audiences and the community. Our performances aim to disrupt barriers imposed by classical music traditions, making classical music more engaging and relevant to all people. Past concerts have taken place at breweries, biker bars, and coffee houses and the group has collaborated with the Museum of Contemporary Art-Tucson, the Consulate of Mexico in Tucson, UNAM-Tucson, El Crisol Mezcal Bar, Galeria Mitotera, the Loft Cinema, and others.

Check out our new video of “Songs and Arias” by Vivian Fine. It features a delightful animation created by Shiang Hwang, following the story of two souls as they connect across space and time.

Upcoming Concerts:

  • Saturday, October 16, 8-10pm at Saint Charles Tavern. Masks not required, outdoor performance. 21 and over.
  • Sunday, October 24, 1-3pm at Tohono Chul Park. Mask required, outdoor performance. No cost for concert, but admission to Tohono Chul is required.

Buy merch to support what we do! You can find our CDs and lots of other cool things in the Tucson Horn Shop! You can contribute to the project through our crowdfunding page. Thank you for supporting new classical music!

We support composers and believe in the medium of contemporary art music to open hearts, shed light on humanity, and create collective experiences. We also enjoy performing pop, rock, and folk crossover music. We strive to celebrate diversity in everything we do, working to create social change in the borderlands community through music.

Please check out our new CD, released on New Focus Recordings on August 6, 2021! You can purchase a physical copy from the Tucson Horn Shop or a digital copy from Bandcamp.

The project behind the CD is called Place and Identity in the Borderlands, which explored the shared cultural identity of Arizona and Mexico. Special collaborators joined us: guitarist Dr. José Luis Puerta, Mexican historian Dr. Luis Coronado Guel, and visual artist Jessica Gonzales, to explore and present new music by American and Mexican composers. Four original paintings by Gonzales were inspired by new musical compositions by Charles Daniels Torres, Alejandro Vera, Anne Leilehua Lanzilotti, and Jay Vosk.

Special thanks to the Arts Foundation for Tucson and Southern Arizona, the Fred Fox School of Music, and the Tucson Guitar Society for their support of this project.

Watch a livestream performance of Borderlands Ensemble HERE!