MAYA, a trio of percussion, harp and flute, was founded in 2005 and performs new music, music of different world cultures, and incorporates improvisations into its performances. MAYA actively commissions music from a broad variety of composers with a special emphasis on emerging composers, receiving grants and awards from American Composers Forum, Argosy Foundation, Jerome Foundation, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, the New York State Council on the Arts, the Spanish Ministry of Culture, and the Jarvis and Constance Doctorow Family Foundation. MAYA In The Spirit (Perspectives Recordings) was released in December 2007. Of the trio's second recording featuring music of Neil Rolnick on his album The Economic Engine (Innova), The New York Times said: "The brightly spirited 'Uptown Jump' (2006), a study in rich, tactile textures and inventive variation, juxtaposes jazz moves with ragalike percussion patterns. MAYA, a trio of flute, harp and percussion, plays it with grace and energy." A third CD, including Robert Paterson's The Book of Goddesses was released on the American Modern Recordings label in 2011. MAYA has toured nationally and performs regularly in New York City.
The term maya has deep roots and diverse meanings around the world. In Hindu philosophy maya is the divine power which has created the cosmos. In Buddhism, maya is the veil of illusion, the transitory appearance of the physical world, and a metaphoric challenge for spiritual aspirants. In the Americas, the Mayan people formed a highly developed culture whose singular achievements included monumental architecture, agriculture, astronomy, mathematics and a distinct calendrical system. Maya is a term found in the Upanishads, in Vedic and Sanskrit writings--a richly evocative image in cultures and literatures throughout the East.
MAYA is a project of Perspectives Ensemble, a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization registered in the State of New York