At the beginning of this year, the string quartet PUBLICQuartet had reached a high point in its career after having its album “Freedom and Faith” nominated for a classical Grammy Award. When co-founder Nick Revel attended the awards ceremony in January, he had no way of knowing that in just a few weeks time, the entire music industry would be suffering from the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak. Although PUBLICQuartet didn’t win the award, the nomination itself was significant, and the group had upcoming tours booked throughout the country for later in the year.
The virus outbreak changed all that, and PUBLIQuartet’s tour was called off. However, its performances were made available online as part of a “Music for Quarantine” series the group posted on YouTube. Likewise, Revel began to make and teach music virtually by using Twitch, Zoom and other online platforms to carry on his work as a performer and educator. Revel also continued in his roles as executive director and music director of the Norwalk Youth Chamber Ensembles and board member of Seabury Academy, a music and arts nonprofit in residence at St. Paul’s Church in Norwalk. In addition, he and his wife ran a virtual summer music camp from their home in Sunnyside, Queens. The violinist-composer and Wilton High School graduate recently took time to discuss how he has adapted his musical career to the pandemic.