In just under four months, Paul Wiancko will welcome guests to the first Bank of America Chamber Music program of the 2024 Festival. Until then, we want you to get to know Paul. A member of the internationally renowned Kronos Quartet, founding member of the duo Ayane & Paul, and member of the distinctive quartet, Owls; Paul’s 2024 Festival debut will mark the first time in the Festival’s history that the standing director is both a performer and composer. 

We asked these five questions to help you get to know Paul: 

  1. What excites you most about leading Spoleto’s Bank of America Chamber Music Series?

What excites me most about directing Spoleto Chamber Music is not just the opportunity to share my own love of music and humanity with people–I try to do that every time I play the cello–rather it is the honor and responsibility of getting to invite the most thoughtful artists and composers of our time to share their own vision and passion with the world. 

  1. What artistic vision do you bring to the group, and how do you see it evolving under your guidance?

I am a lover of all kinds of music and am continually trying to expand my own palate and ability to appreciate things that are new to me. We’ll see what effect that may have on the evolution of the series in the long run! Though I do have an affinity for the new and the strange, I’m less concerned with “pushing the boundaries” than I am with ensuring that we are all teaching ourselves to appreciate things more deeply. From my experience, this practice not only leads to a more satisfying concert experience, but a more fulfilled day-to-day existence.  

  1. Do you have any specific repertoire themes or programming ideas you’d like to explore?

Nope! Just kidding. You’ll have to wait and see.  

  1. If someone has never attended the Chamber Music Series before, what should they expect?

Expect to be welcomed and to be moved. Expect music from all over the world. Expect kindness, humor, and insane amounts of talent. We’re a down-to-earth operation. Previous concert-going experience or musical knowledge not needed.  

  1. What is your favorite thing to do when you are in Charleston?

I have an informal checklist I try to get through when I’m in town:  

  • have an incredible meal at a restaurant I’ve never been to before 
  • jump in the ocean 
  • take a Black history tour of Charleston 
  • go enjoy one of Spoleto’s fantastic productions as an audience member 🙂 


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