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Questions of Practice: Guitarist Nels Cline on Creating Lovers (for Philadelphia)

In advance of Ars Nova Workshop’s premiere of Lovers (for Philadelphia) on June 2, we sat down with composer and guitarist Nels Cline to learn about the inspiring journey through Philadelphia’s musical heritage that led to his new commission. “I’m learning not only the depth and sheer number of amazing artists that have come out of Philadelphia…but there’s been an incredible history of philanthropy here that I was not aware of that affected many of the artists, such as John Coltrane,” he says.

With Center support, Ars Nova Workshop commissioned Cline to create Lovers (for Philadelphia), an expansion of Cline’s 2016 recording Lovers (Blue Note Records).

Nels Cline is a composer and guitarist whose 40-year recording and performing career spans jazz, rock, punk, and experimental. Best known as the lead guitarist in the band Wilco, Cline has received many accolades, including four Grammy Award nominations.