It’s been a while, I apologize. The last few months have been intense! Before I tell you why, though, I want to share with you some exciting projects on the horizon. Keep in mind, many of the details on these projects are pretty vague—sometimes it’s because I’m leaving room for commissioners to make formal announcements on their own, and sometimes it’s because I just don’t have the details completely nailed down yet.
Here’s what we’re looking at:
- September 7-9: On the non-composing front, I’ll be playing “Henry” in a production of next to normal at The Factory Theater in Boston. Hope to see you there!
- September 16: Boston Musica Viva will be playing abstractEXTRACTION at their first-ever Live@SoWa event in Boston.
- Premiere of Hark, the glad sound! (SATB anthem) at the Trinity College Lessons and Carols services in Hartford (see last year’s program here). Details to follow.
- Premiere of a to-be-titled piece for electronics at a Fifth Floor concert in Boston (announcement coming soon).
- Another non-composing item: the Elmsmen will be singing at the Algonquin Club on December 13 for the Trinity Club of Boston.
- December 16: The first ever public performance of an aria from my opera (stay tuned), premiered by the commissioning organization. Details to follow.
- Premiere of a new work for the Balletik Duo at a Fifth Floor concert in Boston.
- Premiere of a new work for Transient Canvas at a Fifth Floor concert in Boston.
- Premiere of Vanitas, a batshit-crazy chamber work, with the Equilibrium Concert Series (still being hammered out).
- Premiere of a large-scale organ commission by the absolutely incredible Christopher Houlihan. Chris will be playing my music at a dual convention of the New York/New Jersey and New England chapters of the American Guild of Organists in Hartford. Details to follow.
- Evening-length preview of the opera in Boston. Many, many more details to follow.
- Premiere of the opera. I know, I know, this is all incredibly nebulous. The commissioning organization will make the formal announcement of the opera soon, and I want to make sure they have control over the publicity. Suffice to say I’m extremely excited.
All of these will eventually be added to the calendar, and all will be blogged about. You’ve been warned.
Anyway, here’s a little of what I’ve been up to for the past few months!
In June, I delivered a talk at my Trinity five-year reunion in Hartford. The presentation was a thoroughly updated (though similarly titled) version of Sounding It Out, the lecture I gave at Trinity back in April 2011. At some point I’ll be uploading the whole thing here—the problem I’m having now is that a) it’s a Prezi and b) the audio track was recorded on an iPhone sitting in the audience. If I can make those two parties work together, I should be able to upload it soon.
The nature of the talk was the evolution of Western classical music, and how I, as a modern composer, fit into it. Special emphasis was given the increasing diversity of material (harmonic, melodic, thematic, rhythmic, etc.) over time, and how my music—which has been characterized as aesthetically mercurial—is a logical (to me, at least) extension of that trajectory.
It ended with a performance of three of my pieces—How sweet I roam’d, and the Kyrie and Agnus Dei from my Missa Brevis for Three Male Voices—by the Elmsmen (our first time performing together in over a year). When all was said and done, I was pretty pleased!
Then, just a week later, I had the honor of premiering i carry your heart(i carry it in), set to (of course) E.E. Cummings, at the wedding of two great friends. Despite the performance being outside (and our numbers being a bit diminished), everyone pulled together and sang beautifully.
Then, the morning after said wedding, it was straight into the (absurdly gorgeous) studios of WGBH in Boston for The Tortoise and the Hare!
It was wonderful seeing both the Boston Musica Viva and Marimba Magic again, and Steve Aveson (as always) nailed the narration. This project will be taking on a life of its own in the months to come, but for now it’s under wraps. Rest assured you haven’t heard the last of either of those furry woodland creatures.
As a side note, Christopher Pickett (the librettist, of course) and I are already discussing future projects—hopefully there will be announcements up here for those soon too.
Things quieted down for a couple of weeks. And then …
I GOT MARRIED!
My best friend and I tied the knot on July 14 in Narragansett, Rhode Island. It was easily the best day of my life.
The wedding featured music by my great friend and colleague, Andrew Paul Jackson. My best buddy/Best Man, Devin Romanul, conducted a choir of my male friends in a beautiful rendition of Stephen Paulus‘ Shall I Compare Thee?, and Micah walked down the aisle to the theme from my Variations for String Quartet (2009), the first piece I composed for her.
We then enjoyed a gut-wrenchingly beautiful nine days in on the Isle of Capri, in Italy. I might do a blog post about this, or I might just write a novel. I’m not quite sure yet. Here are three pictures.
Then I came back to the real world.
That’s all for now. I’ll be more frequent with updates going forward, so please don’t be a stranger!