The Millennium Quintet was created by two university professors who were bored by the idea of performing just “another faculty recital.” These two professors, during their tenure at Auburn University, were Roman Lavore, piano and Bootsie K. Mayfield, flute. They began to explore a new concert format which they believed would be exciting and innovative. The idea, sparked by the desire to provide music that would appeal to both the average college student and the avid chamber music enthusiast, was to combine the old with the new by superimposing Pop over Classical, blending Bach with the Beatles, and programming Mozart, Debussy and Beethoven with John Williams, Stephen Sondheim, Barry Manilow and Andrew Lloyd Weber. The effort resulted in the development of an ensemble originally called “From Then to Now.”
Students started attending rehearsals of the ensemble. Word of the ensemble spread over the campus and by the time of the first concert the largest crowd ever in attendance for a concert at the Auburn Student Union facility filled the hall to over capacity causing the local Fire Marshall to close the auditorium to those who were not among the earliest arrivers. Since the initial idea was to experiment with one unique and audience appealing concert for Auburn University, the ensemble was astounded by the series of business offers and concert bookings which resulted from their first performance. Because some members of the ensemble had previously made commitments to accept teaching positions at other universities at the end of the current academic year, the ensemble was limited to the concerts that could be performed prior to the end of that school year.
Six years later, realizing they had developed something very special in performing all styles of music, the ensemble reconvened in Auburn and began planning and rehearsing a new show. Since the word “millennium” means a thousand years, the ensemble renamed the group and called themselves - The Millennium Quintet.” The name was chosen long before the recent 2000 Millennium to represent an ensemble that bridges the gap between all musical generations. It is a name that refuses to be limited by the traditional classifications of music. Once again the group was approached for appearances at Spoleto and other venues. Overwhelmed by the response to their concerts, the artists, once again, had other commitments that kept the group from going on a full scale concert tour.
Originally brought to Spoleto to perform the opening Bach Festival Concert, their performances were extended to numerous other venues at Spoleto. These concerts included playing for the opening ceremonies of a Charleston Baseball game to the premier performance of Arthur Millers’ play “The American Clock.” Despite requests to extend their performances at Spoleto, once again the members of the ensemble were called back to teach and honor their contracts at various universities and gave up the opportunity for a 40 city concert tour. Frustrated by this situation, the members of the ensemble returned to their families and teaching positions at four major universities, passing up a recording contract and the concert tour.
Ironically, all of the members later became soloists and recording artists in their own rights. Yet, each regretted the lost opportunity the ensemble had uniquely provided. Each member fondly remembered their work together and longed for the opportunity to once again collaborate in such a creative environment. Performing with The Millennium Quintet was, in their minds, the most creative, challenging, and exciting experience of their musical careers playing works intended for other instruments and breaking unnecessary musical barriers both collectively and on their individual instruments.
Realizing the ensemble was way ahead of its time and still not replicated by another performing group, the three solo performers, Roman Lavore, Bootsie K. Mayfield and Tony McCutchen have combined their years of performances and teaching experiences to once again reunite The Millennium Quintet - this time to complete their original visions and opportunities. Baroque, Classical, Romantic, Contemporary, Pop, Rock, Country, Folk, Sacred and original compositions can all be found in one performance by The Millennium Quintet. Since the ensemble performs the music of the past, present, and original compositions for the future, The Millennium Quintet, truly spans a thousand years of musical creativity.
Experience a concert like no other.
Experience “M5 - The Millennium Quintet.”