The University of Richmond’s ensemble-in-residence, eighth blackbird, captured its second Grammy Award Feb. 12. The group won in the category Best Small Ensemble Performance for a recording of Steven Mackey’s “Lonely Motels – Music from Slide.”

In 2008 the group received a Grammy for the album, “Strange Imaginary Animals.”

Based in Chicago, eighth blackbird has been affiliated with Richmond since 2004. In addition to performing on campus at the Modlin Center for the Arts, the six-member group regularly instructs classes, conducts master classes, lectures and coaches music students. They are known as one of the leading new music ensembles of their generation.

The Modlin Center co-commissioned “Lonely Motels.” Modlin Center director Deborah Sommers said “We are delighted that eighth blackbird continues to call the University of Richmond their home, and for their continued contribution as faculty members to the university's Department of Music. We look forward to working with them on future projects.”

eighth blackbird premiered “Lonely Motels” at the Ojai Festival two years ago. The piece also was nominated for a Grammy in the contemporary classical composition category.

The ensemble has scheduled its next Modlin Center performance, “Less is More,” March 14.

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