Our second annual Fred & Charlotte Hubbell Visiting Artist In Residence Program, an initiative designed to offer unique opportunities for the organization to engage with the community in a meaningful way, takes place from October 18-23. The program was established through a $1 million gift from the Hubbells through the Symphony’s Sound of the City campaign.

Sandbox Percussion joins the Symphony as the second annual Fred & Charlotte Hubbell Visiting Artists In Residence. The ensemble will spend nearly a week working with students in area schools, including Valley High School, Southeast Polk High School, Ankeny High School, and at the Des Moines Symphony Academy. And on October 21 and 22, they'll perform Viet Cuong's Re(new)al with the Des Moines Symphony Orchestra. 

A variety of activities have been planned for the residency.


A variety of workshops will be led by Sandbox Percussion at several high schools, including Valley High School, Southeast Polk High School and Ankeny High School. 


The residency will wrap up with members of Sandbox Percussion working with the Des Moines Symphony Youth Orchestra and Wind Ensembles. 


Sandbox Percussion joins the Orchestra for a performance of Viet Vuong's Re(new)al on October 21 and 22 in Discover Scheherazade. The piece is enchanting, calling on the forms of renewable energy.

"I have tremendous respect for renewable energy initiatives and the commitment to creating a new, better reality for us all," writes Viet Cuong, the “alluring” and “wildly inventive” (The New York Times) composer. "Re(new)al is a percussion quartet concerto that is similarly devoted to finding unexpected ways to breathe new life into traditional ideas, and the solo quartet therefore performs on several “found” instruments, including crystal glasses and compressed air cans.”

The Visiting Artist in Residence program was made possible by a generous gift from Fred & Charlotte Hubbell. 


Described as “exhilarating” (The New York Times) and “utterly mesmerizing” (The Guardian), GRAMMY®-nominated ensemble Sandbox Percussion is dedicated to artistry in contemporary chamber music. The ensemble was brought together in 2011 by a love of chamber music and the simple joy of playing together; today, Sandbox Percussion captivates worldwide audiences with visually and aurally stunning performances.

Sandbox Percussion’s 2021 album Seven Pillars was nominated for two GRAMMY® awards — Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance and Best Contemporary Classical Composition. The ensemble performed the piece more than 15 times throughout the United States and Europe last season, including at the Théâtre du Châtelet, in Paris.

In the 2023-24 season, Sandbox Percussion performs Seven Pillars at the VIVO Music Festival (Columbus, OH); the New School (New York); Aperio, Music of the Americas (Houston); the Frost School of Music (Miami); Brown University (Providence, RI); and the Peace Center (Greenville, SC), among other venues.

This season, Sandbox Percussion also releases their fourth album, Wilderness, featuring the piece of the same name by experimental composer Jerome Begin. Other season highlights include two performances at the Park Avenue Armory (New York), featuring premieres by Chris Cerrone and Viet Cuong; a performance at the 92nd Street Y with pianist and new-music champion Conor Hanick featuring the New York premiere of two works composed for them by Christopher Cerrone and by Tyshawn Sorey; and an appearance at the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. Sandbox Percussion will also continue to champion Viet Cuong’s acclaimed concerto for percussion quartet Re(new)al, with performances with the Des Moines Symphony (IA), and with the Albany Symphony (NY), which commissioned the piece.