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The Liminal Voices for Orchestra (2016)

Read by the Toledo Symphony Orchestra, November 8, 2016. Michael Lewanski, Conductor. This is not a performance, it is an unrehearsed reading. Recording used with the permission of the TSO.

To be liminal is to be on a threshold – to exist between two states of being or of consciousness. “The Liminal Voices” was inspired by my time spent in the woods of Vermont, and the songs of the birds that inhabit these woods. Their vocalizations seem almost human, but are at the same time otherworldly. On occasion, I am lucky enough to hear my favourite singer – my namesake – the hermit thrush. As I listen, I think of lines from Whitman and Frost that exalt this little bird’s song. These poets’ words, like the sound they describe, can transport the mind far away from everyday life.

 

The Common Thread for Alto Saxophone and Percussion (2016)

Written for and performed by Bent Frequency at the Charlotte New Music Festival, June 2016. Jan Baker, alto saxophone; Stuart Gerber, percussion.

The Common Thread
i. spathiphyllum
ii. aloe vera
iii. solanum lycopersinum
iv. chlorophytum cosmosum
v. crassula ovata

This piece is about my house plants. I love them very much.
“chlorophytum cosmosum” is based on the song “One Day” by Roy MacNeil.

 

I So Liked Spring (2014)

Performed with Elijah McCormack and Sarah Hughes, Skidmore College, Spring 2014.

I so liked Spring last year
Because you were here;
The thrushes too –
Because it was these you so liked to hear –
I so liked you.

This year’s a different thing,
I’ll not think of you.
But I’ll like the Spring because it is simply Spring
As the thrushes do.

– Charlotte Mew (1869-1928)

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