Music: Well-Strung Makes Classical Music Sexy

The gay, all-male string quartet Well Strung appears Jan. 15 at the Kravis Center in West Palm Beach. Credit: Submitted photo.

Move over One Direction because there’s another boy band touring the country. Well, they are a string quartet, but they play the music of Madonna, Lady Gaga and Ke$ha—in addition to Bach, Beethoven and Brahms—and they’re hot, too.

Violinists Edmund Bagnell and Chris Marchant, violist Trevor Wadleigh and cellist Daniel Shevlin are Well-Strung, the gay all-male string quartet that is making classical music cool, and they’re coming to West Palm Beach’s Kravis Center on Thursday, Jan. 15.

“We are all classically-trained,” explained Bagnell in between the quartet’s daily rehearsals, “but, I would say we are also products of our generation. We like pop music and have that sensibility about how pop would present itself.”

Despite their provocative publicity photos and the clever double entendre behind their name, he is quick to add, “I don’t think we’re ‘trying’ to make classical music sexy. It’s tricky to define.”

For many people, classical music can seem distant to audiences, he said, and the quartet is willing to do anything that makes the music more personal, relevant and, yes, fun.

The Kravis Center program is titled “Popssical,” and offers exactly the signature mash-up of musical styles the group has staked out since its founding in Provincetown in 2012. Without revealing the entire playlist, he did promise some Mozart and Madonna, Beethoven and Black-Eyed Peas. Oh, and there’s even a musical tribute to One Direction.

Bagnell does note that the quartet’s tastes, like most performers, have broadened. While Pink might be thought of as their current “artist-in-residence,” they are always trying new arrangements, most written themselves, and expanding their classical repertoire, as well.

The boys are based in New York and spend a lot of time together, between rehearsals and their busy touring schedule. And, they largely manage to avoid the drama that many groups encounter, especially for an all-gay band.

“We know each other so well at this point, we can anticipate what our individual reactions will be to pretty much any given situation. We’re like brothers, but things can bubble up,” Bagnell said.

For now, the four guys of Well-Strung are enjoying their growing fame. They performed for a national television audience on “The Today Show” and feel their unique approach to programming will continue to propel their careers.

Well-Strung performs on Thursday, Jan. 15 at 7:30 p.m. in the Rinker Playhouse at the Kravis Center in West Palm Beach. Tickets are $28 at Kravis.org.

Check out SFGN’s in-depth profile of the sexy foursome here.


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