Whistling Hens was founded by Jennifer Piazza-Pick (soprano) and Natalie Groom (clarinet) with a vision to celebrate and advance the artistic accomplishments of women through an ensemble performing all female-composed music. Inspired by a quote from a male music critic who said of Lili Boulanger, "women composers are at best whistling hens,” the Whistling Hens duo was hatched. Our group performs and commissions music by women composers from around the world. In the past year, Whistling Hens has commissioned four new pieces and premiered three works to expand the soprano/clarinet repertoire.
When we ask people, even classical musicians, how many female composers they can think of, it is rare anyone can name more than one or two. We seek to change this through our programming, outreach, and commissions. Our work invites listeners to reflect on the impact male privilege has had on traditional music programming, question the status quo of gender inequality in the classical music community, and engage with music by women of various backgrounds.
In 2020, the Hens were awarded Chamber Music America’s esteemed Residency Partnership Program grant, as well as the M-Cubator Grant for Entrepreneurial Projects and a grant from Awesome Without Borders/The Harnisch Foundation. Whistling Hens has performed at Women Composers Festival of Hartford, Darkwater Women in Music Festival at UNC Pembroke, the American Library Association Conference in DC, and the District New Music Coalition Conference in addition to serving as an artist-in-residence ensemble at Avaloch Farm Music Institute. In September 2021, Whistling Hens will be the Darkwater Women in Music Festival's Ensemble in Residence, and as such we will perform the winning compositions from the Call for Scores.
Contact us if you are interested in collaborating or sponsoring a commission, project, conference, or recital.
Darkwater Women in Music Festival
Call for Scores
Whistling Hens is the Ensemble in Residence for the Darkwater Women in Music Festival in September 2021. We will be performing the winning compositions from the Call for Scores. Click here to enter the composition competition.
New Sheet Music Publications
Shop two new publications of songs for clarinet and soprano. Transcribed from Rebecca Clarke's works, Down by the Salley Gardens and Three Old English Songs are available for purchase. Click the button below for more information.