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The Homecoming + MusicNOW weekend will kick off with a celebratory opening night concert Friday, April 27 at the Cincinnati Masonic Center. The concert will feature Mouse on Mars, Red Bird Hollow (Bryce & Aaron Dessner), Sam Amidon, Lisa Hannigan, Spank Rock, and Kristín Anna, plus very special guests. This separately ticketed event will also give admission to MusicNOW events throughout the weekend at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center. (Homecoming passes also include admission to the Freedom Center.)

Some of MusicNOW’s many highlights will include:

eighth blackbird with Bryce Dessner perform the evocative music of late composer Julius Eastman

eighth blackbird join Bonnie “Prince” Billy in a powerful performance of Frederic Rzewski’s politically-charged classic, “Coming Together”

Ireland’s Crash Ensemble perform Danish composer Hans Abrahamsen’s masterpiece, “Schnee”

Noted writer and musicologist Will Robin will host several pre-concert discussions.

Cincinnati’s Contemporary Art Center will host an exhibition by photographer Graham MacIndoe, featuring images from The National’s “Sleep Well Beast” and subsequent tour curated by The National’s Scott Devendorf.

Also running concurrently with the festival: two video installations by Icelandic artist Ragnar Kjartansson – a frequent collaborator with The National and the Dessners – on display at the Cincinnati Art Museum, “The Visitors” and “Scenes from Western Culture.”

The Cincinnati Ballet will present a work based on Bryce Dessner’s “Murder Ballads” with music performed by eighth blackbird and choreography from the legendary Justin Peck of the New York City Ballet in several performances during the weekend.

Friday 04.27

Saturday 04.28

Sunday 04.29


Please contact Jonathan Lippincott if you would like to Donate to MusicNOW. MusicNOW is a 501©(3) corporation. All contributions to musicNOW are tax deductible. Contributions may be sent to:


1241 Elm St.

Cincinnati, OH 45202

MusicNOW was founded in 2006 by Bryce Dessner of The National. Through the years, the festival has invited contemporary musicians and risk-taking artists who do not fit neatly into genre defined categories. Past performances have included festival-only collaborations, world premiere compositions, and sold out audiences.

Ross, Sinclaire & Associates