Invoke string quartet covers wide variety of genres


Photo courtesy of Nathan Russell and Invoke

Invoke members Karl Mitze, Geoff Manyin, Zachariah Matteson and Nick Montopoli (left to right). The band is a contemporary string quartet that covers genres from jazz to bluegrass to fiddle tunes.

Hannah Jenkins, Contributing writer

This Friday, March 18, the group Invoke is coming to NMU’s Reynolds Recital Hall in the final installment of the Siril Concert Series’ 2021-2022 season. In their contemporary take on a traditional string ensemble, Invoke covers genres such as classical, bluegrass, Appalachian fiddle tunes, jazz and minimalism. 

The Siril Concert Series is made possible by the Siril Endowment for the Musical Arts, which was started in 2014 through the generosity of an anonymous donor. According to the NMU Department of Music website, “The Siril Endowment for the Musical Arts is designed to … [provide] funds to establish and maintain a visiting artist program directed by the NMU Music Department and the funds to import performances that expose students to a wide variety of music genres.”   

“We try to bring a wide range of artists to campus in any given year,” Mark Flaherty, department head and professor of music, said. 

During the 2021-2022 season, the Siril Concert Series has featured a brass quintet, a vocalist, and a flutist. Invoke came up as a possibility in the search for a string ensemble.  

“[Invoke is] a group of creative, energetic young musicians who seemed like they would really appeal to our audience at NMU,” Flaherty said. 

Flaherty encourages students and the public to attend the Invoke concert and he thinks Invoke will blow audiences’ minds.

“This isn’t your standard string quartet by any stretch of the imagination,” Flaherty said. “They will be performing a number of original compositions, and pieces that have been written specifically for them – it will be interesting to hear this material. I’m also interested in seeing the way they utilize instruments such as mandolin and banjo in this setting.”

Another exciting aspect of Invoke’s visit is their presentation for the Department of Music’s weekly music forum. This presentation, entitled “Collaboration for Dummies!” is part of a required class for music majors but is also open to all NMU students, faculty, staff and members of the community.  

“I think their insight as members of a successful chamber ensemble will be interesting to both musicians and non-musicians,” Flaherty said. 

The presentation will take place in Reynolds Recital Hall from 1 to 1:50 p.m. on Friday, March 18. 

Invoke’s concert will also take place in Reynolds Recital Hall, at 7:30 p.m. that same day. Admission is free to NMU students and youth 18 years old and under, with a $12 general admission fee for the public. 

This, and all other performances in the Siril Concert Series, are made possible by the generous support of the Siril Endowment for the Musical Arts. For more information on concerts and the series itself, visit For more information on the members of Invoke and their music, visit