"In a program of serial high points, there were too many to mention...An intriguing and hugely enjoyable evening in every way and a standout in the Washington Performing Arts Society's fine winter season."
- The Washington Post
“Their rock star status…is well deserved. Their classically honed technique mixed with grit and all out passionate attack transfixes the audience…” That is how The Sarasota Herald Tribune described SYBARITE5, the first string quintet ever selected as a winner of the Concert Artists Guild International Competition in its 60-year history. Comprised of Sami Merdinian and Sarah Whitney, violins; Angela Pickett, viola; Laura Metcalf, cello; and Louis Levitt, bass, SYBARITE5 has taken audiences by storm all across the US, forever changing the perception of chamber music performance. From the moment their bows hit the strings, this quintet of talented, diverse musicians takes the audience on an exciting ride that engages the senses and redefines the rules.
This past season, the group visited 16 states and the US Virgin Islands in addition to appearances in Newfoundland, Japan and Argentina. Other recent performance highlights include SYBARITE5's Carnegie Hall debut at Zankel Hall on the CAG series and performances at Washington Performing Arts, Library of Congress, Aspen Music Festival, UC San Diego, University of Arizona, Sun Valley Center for the Arts, University of Nevada/Reno, Chautauqua Institution, and Tuckamore Chamber Music Festival. Closer to home, the quintet has performed in New York at Lincoln Center, Time Warner Center, Tishman Auditorium, Bohemian National Hall and at such diverse locations as Galapagos Artspace, the Apple Store, the Museum of Sex, the Core Club, the cell, and the Cutting Room. The group has also performed on the CBS Early Show and for his Holiness the Dalai Lama. SYBARITE5 is one of the first groups engaged at SubCulture, one of New York City's most up-and-coming venues.
Ongoing projects include curating their own series at NYC's the cell, the Radiohead Remixed Project, The Shuffle Effect and New Music IDOL (featuring a series of short newly-commissioned works by student composers in collaboration with university composition departments). In May of 2014, SYBARITE5 will launch their very own musical festival, the Forward Festival, in Sarasota, Florida. At the 2011 CAG Competition, SYBARITE5 was awarded the Sylvia Ann Hewlett Adventurous Artist Prize, which was used to commission new pieces for Radiohead Remixed and to produce the CD Everything in its Right Place. In spring 2015, the quintet looks forward to premiering the world's first concerto for string quintet and orchestra by the acclaimed American composer Dan Visconti.