Firey Strings Company was founded in 2011 by cellist Nioka Workman, to ‘push the art of string playing into the next level’ by providing unique and cutting edge platforms for the performance, creation and presentation of Jazz and Improvisation. We connect underserved audiences to new and exciting programs while providing an enriching artistic community for women improvisers.
FSCO presents diverse, powerhouse female improvisers from Mexico, Poland, Japan, USA and Germany. FSCO's ensembles range from solo to 10-piece orchestra. The touring ensemble is a popular 5-piece Jazz Chamber group called the Firey String Sistas! FSCO's programs have been featured at venues such as BAM Cafe, Brooklyn’s Center for Arts and Culture, South Orange Performing Arts Center, the Puffin Gallery, the Polish-American Festival in Greenpoint, Martha Graham Studios, Brooklyn Museum Sculpture Gardens and Coltrane Day Festival. FSCO partners with schools and community centers in urban areas through various educational outreach programs as a vital part of FSCO's mission.
The Firey Strings Company presents a broad variety of chamber and mixed-media performances each season, the largest being FSCO's Radiance Festival which brings together composers and performers to create new jazz and contemporary works that highlight improvisation. Recently featured composers include Geraldine Eguiluz, Jay Rodriguez and Dana Hanchard. Another program is Women, Wine and Song inspired, created and performed by women presented in an intimate and celebratory style that encourages discussion and connection among creative women. A recent iteration featured founder Nioka Workman’s musical theater piece called Her Reflections, honoring Josephine Baker. The FSCO passionately pursues opportunities to collaborate with artists in other fields. SouLyric features collaboration with actors and spoken word artists. SYNERGY brings together dance, electronics and musical performance. FSCO has a summer residency at the Joffrey Ballet School where dancers get to experience, often for the first time, the magic of improvising to live music.
As part of Firey String Company’s mission to grow and support a vibrant musical community, FSCO provides an annual series of low-cost workshops or, Sessions, for string players that cover a wide range of topics suited to both seasoned improvisers and those just getting started on their creative journey.
Educational outreach beyond the musical community is also a core value of FSCO. They partner with several schools and community centers including Bailey’s Cafe, and Gotham Professional Arts Academy in Brooklyn, NY to present concerts and interactive workshops that tell historically and culturally important stories through engaging musical performance.
The 16-17 FSCO season will feature a return of First Run a showcase for new and experimental projects to share with the community. Radiance 4, a program of string quartets written by both members and collaborating composers. The season will also feature a new production of Her Reflections, Nioka Workman’s historical theater piece about the lives of Josephine Baker and CJ Walker, and a new edition of Women, Wine and Song presenting “Rebellion Stories” - a collaboration with singer/actress Vienna Carroll in which she vividly captures the perseverance, strength and love present in the painful struggle for freedom from slavery in America through storytelling and powerful song.
Firey Strings Company would like to thank our special partners and friends for their generous support and donations: Arts & Education Continuum, Darrell Bridges, K & S Music Inc., Fractured Atlas, Material For The Arts, Chamber Music America, Bailey's Cafe, Music For The People, Stefanie Seigel, Clifton Anderson and numerous friends who have help our vision to blossom. Thank You!