Aqua Vitae, for percussion quartet
SFA Percussion Ensemble
Stephen F Austin University
The Initiation (premiere)
Georgetown Waterfront Park
Where the sidewalk ends... (premiere)
Nikita Fitenko, piano
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Category Archives: Solo
The amazing violist Wendy Richman is heading into the recording studio later this spring to make her first solo album. I’m honored that she’s including Highway Music, a piece I wrote for her a few years ago, alongside awesome music by Jason Eckhardt, Ken Ueno, Christian Carey, David Smooke, Lou Bunk, Everette Minchew, Arlene Sierra, and Jose-Luis Hurtado. All of the pieces on this record feature Wendy’s unique skill in playing viola and singing. Wendy’s hosting a fundraising campaign over at indiegogo for the duration of this next month to cover all costs of recording and production. Please check it out and consider pitching in if you can!
I’m very happy to share the premiere performance by Emily Green of some new piano music from this past December. I became infatuated with Domenico Scarlatti’s huge corpus of Sonatas a few years ago, and these two pieces are a tribute of sorts to the master. Please click here to take a listen and read more. Emily did an amazing job with this music at the premiere, and we’re hoping to make a studio recording this summer.
One of my projects this past year was a new solo cello piece for Dan Shomper. Vox Animarum is the result, and you can listen to it below.
More info on Vox Animarum here.
Two new pieces were premiered this spring: back in March, cellist Dan Shomper gave the premiere of Vox Animarum, and in April, Colin Hill and the percussion ensemble at Tennessee Tech University premiered Aqua Vitae, for percussion quartet.
Both of these pieces were written over my sabbatical last fall, and in each work I’m trying something entirely new to my compositional vocabulary: in the cello piece, I worked with Dan on bow pressure techniques that widen the timbral spectrum to include quite a bit of noise in the cello’s tone. In the percussion quartet, I decided to work with a collection of junk instruments (bits of metal and wood) alongside traditional percussion instruments like bass drums, toms, marimbas, and vibraphone. Aqua Vitae, as you might guess from the title, was written as an homage to the centuries-old whiskey making process. You can read more about both pieces via these links: Vox Animarum, for solo cello, Aqua Vitae, for percussion quartet.