photo by Shervin Lainez 2020

A member of the ensemble Sō Percussion (called “brilliant” and “consistently impressive” by the New York Times) since 2007, Eric Cha-Beach has performed at Carnegie Hall, the Brooklyn Academy of Music, The Lincoln Center Festival, Stanford Lively Arts, The Walker Center and dozens of other venues in the United States. In that time, Sō Percussion has toured Russia, Australia, Colombia and throughout Europe. They have performed on The Late Show with Steven Colbert, at the TED Conference and Bonnaroo Festival, and with Radiolab Live. Eric has had the opportunity to work closely with Steve Reich, Caroline Shaw, David Lang, Julia Wolfe, Bryce Dessner, Steve Mackey, Dan Trueman, Fred Frith, Suzanne Farrin, Glenn Kotche, Paul Lansky, Donnacha Dennehy, Vijay Iyer, Dawn Upshaw, Shara Nova, Matmos, The National, Dan Deacon, Buke and Gase, Dave Douglas, Angelica Negron, and many others.  And he has performed on eighteen of Sō Percussion’s albums.

As a composer, he has written works for JACK Quartet, Modern Medieval, Buke and Gase, Shara Nova, Caroline Shaw, Sirius String Quartet, and This Is How We Fly. Eric’s pieces written for Sō Percussion are featured in ‘A Gun Show’ (BAM Next Wave 2016); ‘From Out a Darker Sea’ (Forma Arts UK commission 2016); ‘Where (we) Live’ (BAM Next Wave 2012); ‘Five Songs, Dances, and Meditations’ written to accompany Martin Kersels’ Five Songs (Whitney Biennial 2010); ‘Imaginary City’ (BAM Next Wave 2009); and ‘Music for Trains’ – a site-specific performance on the train and at train stations in Brattleboro and Bellows Falls, VT (2008).  With Jason Treuting and Josh Quillen, he co-composed music for Shen Wei Dance’s ‘Undivided/Divided’ (Park Avenue Armory 2011), the 2wice ‘Fifth Wall’ app for iPad with dancer Jonah Bokaer, and the sound installation ‘On/Off’ as part of Bring to Light/Nuit Blanche New York 2011.  He has composed the music for the dance film ‘Parts Don’t Work’ (2011) by choreographer KT Niehoff and Lingo Dance, and the transition music for the internet radio station Q2 (2010 and 2013).  His compositions have also been featured in the ‘Bell by Bell’ parade as part of Make Music Winter in 2011 and 2012.  And his electronic music has been featured during the 2012 Look and Listen Festival and on the album ‘Amid the Noise Remixes’ (2011).

Outside of Sō Percussion, Eric has premiered new works from Lukas Ligeti, Caroline Shaw, Frank Nuyts and Jacob Cooper. Upcoming solo commissions are in development with Andrea Mazzariello and Dan Trueman. And he has performed and collaborated with pianist Peter Serkin, rock band The National, electronic artist Nicolas Jaar, composer Tristan Perich, the St. Louis Symphony Chamber Ensemble with David Robertson, bass player Evan Lipson, composer Daniel Wohl and many others.

Together with the other members of Sō Percussion, Eric serves as Edward T. Cone Performer-in-Residence at the Princeton University Music Department. He is also Co-Director of the Sō Percussion Summer Institute at Princeton University, an annual intensive course for college-aged percussionists started in 2009. And he is co-director of the percussion program at the Bard College Conservatory of Music.

Studying with Robert van Sice, Eric received his Bachelor of Music and Graduate Performance Diploma at the Peabody Conservatory, where he won the Yale Gordon Concerto Competition, and his Master of Music at the Yale School of Music. He also received a Fulbright fellowship and pursued additional study with Bernhard Wulff in Freiburg, Germany.