Happy New Year's Eve! As 2015 comes to a close, I'm spending a little time looking back on the past 12 months and remembering everything that happened this year. I don't often share behind-the-scenes posts, but today, I thought it might be fun to share a few of my favorite things from 2015.
2015 was a big year for me, personally and professionally. My wife and I bought our first home in Rochester, NY this summer (a 1920 Colonial) and we're slowly learning how to be homeowners (and how to fix things!).
On a professional note, it was an honor to have my music performed at a number of all-state conferences and honor band festivals in New York, South Carolina, Kansas, Oklahoma, Illinois, Hawaii, and Kentucky. In addition, I was thrilled to have my music performed at the World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles (WASBE) conference in July and by the National Association for Music Education (NAfME) All-National Honor Band at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville in October.
I attended the Chamber Music America (CMA) conference in NYC in January and helped organize the pre-conference day, "How to Succeed in a Changing Musical World," hosted by Eastman's Paul R. Judy Center for Applied Research. We had a great time at the conference and enjoyed exploring Times Square for a few days!
I had the pleasure of working with several great high school and college bands this year (and a church choir, or two!), with residencies, guest rehearsals, and Skype sessions at Nazareth College, Augustana University, Liverpool High School, Trinity Emmanuel Lutheran Church, Arkansas Tech Summer Band Festival, and Canandaigua Academy, among others.
As a composer, the best part of my job is when people play (or sing) my music. This year, I counted over 65 performances in 18 states (and I know I'm missing some! Side note: I'd love to include your performance on my events calendar! Just fill out this form).
As most of you know, I self-publish the majority of my work, but over the past few years, I've started working with a few publishers for some of my choral and chamber music. This year, I had five pieces accepted for publication with Colla Voce, Augsburg Fortress, and Keyboard Percussion Publications:
It was a busy writing year for me, with two new pieces for band (Vermont State Fair and River Town Jubilee), two pieces for orchestra (Winter Song and Vermont State Fair), a new chamber version of "A Country Boy in Winter" (from Alcott Songs), and my second song cycle (New England Folk Songs).
P.S. Thinking about a commission for the 2016-2017 year? Let's talk!
As always, thanks for your continued encouragement and support of my music. Cheers to 2016!
It is always exciting to attend performances of my music in person, and occasionally this happens in the Rochester area, where I live. This past weekend, Dr. Jared Chase led a performance of “Filled With His Voice” with a mass choir consisting of several Rochester-area church choirs. It was wonderful to hear the rich sound of 60 or so voices singing this piece, along with beautiful saxophone playing by Dr. Chisato Eda Marling and piano playing by Alex Kuczynski. Thanks so much to all who were involved!
I'm pleased to share that three of my works recently accepted for publication are now available directly from the publishers: Augsburg Fortress, Colla Voce Music, and Keyboard Percussion Publications.
- Chorale Variations, commissioned by the percussion duo Escape X, is now available from Keyboard Percussion Publications here.
- Speaking Love, a Christmas Carol for SATB Choir and Piano is now available from Colla Voce Music here.
- Filled With His Voice, (SATB+piano+alto sax) commissioned by the Bethel College Concert Choir directed by Dr. William Eash, is now available in the St. Olaf Choral Series of Augsburg Fortress here.
It's August, which means it's time to start listening to Christmas music, right? I've been working on a few new choral projects this summer and am excited to share them with you! Here are four new choral works - anthems and hymn arrangements perfect for your Fall, Advent, and Christmas programs! Take a look at the scores, listen to the recordings, and let me know if you are interested in any of these works. I'd love to hear from you!
Best wishes for a wonderful Fall semester!
For All His Blessings SATB Choir with Piano
This lyrical anthem quotes the text and music from the doxology - "Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost" - in a recurring refrain. D.W. Griffin's text is general enough to be used at any point of the year, but it is especially fitting for Thanksgiving! The final stanza illustrates the richness of textual imagery: "O praise the Lord for all He’s done, for all His blessings, one by one, and see His goodness, mountains high, fill all the earth and sea and sky."
Wake, O My Soul SATB Choir Unaccompanied
A carol-like anthem for the Advent and Christmas season - full of joy, awe, and reverence. Perfect for Christmas Eve or a special holiday program! The opening stanza reads, "Wake, O my soul, and hail the morn, for unto us a Savior’s born; see, how the angels wing their way, to usher in the glorious day!"
O Little Town of Bethlehem SATB Choir & Organ with optional String Quartet and Congregational Singing
A simple and serene setting of this well-known carol, with the tune FOREST GREEN. This work was written as a hymn arrangement to be used with congregational singing, but may also be used as a choral anthem. Perfect for a Lessons and Carols service! Use with organ accompaniment or organ and string quartet. An optional Soprano descant is included for the last verse.
My men's choir (TTBB unaccompanied) piece "From Our Happy Home" with text by Louisa May Alcott is now published and available through Colla Voce Music here! You can order the octavos directly from Colla Voce, and the piece will soon be available on JW Pepper. If you are looking for a fun Christmas-themed men's choir piece, check it out! You can see the full score on the Colla Voce page here.
Happy New Year! 2013 was a great year and 2014 looks like it is going to be excellent as well! I am excited about a bunch of interesting projects that are in the works, as well as upcoming performances which include the following: January 3-24, 2014 Bethel College Concert Choir - European Tour Directed by Dr. William Eash performing Filled With His Voice
January 8-10, 2014 University of Portland Wind Symphony - Puget Sound Tour Directed by Dr. Patrick Murphy performing Goodnight, Goodnight
January 25, 2014 Western Kentucky Honors Band Directed by Dr. Dan Belongia performing This World Alive
February 1, 2014 Houghton College Symphonic Wind Ensemble Directed by Dr. Justin Davis performing Goodnight, Goodnight
February 1, 2014 Virginia Senior High All-District Concert Band Directed by Duane Hill performing Goodnight, Goodnight
February 14, 2014 Houghton College Symphonic Wind Ensemble Directed by Dr. Justin Davis performing Goodnight, Goodnight
February 18, 2014 Bloomington High School Wind Symphony Directed by Max Chernick performing Magnolia Star
February 22, 2014 Bloomington High School Wind Symphony Directed by Max Chernick performing Magnolia Star
February 26, 2014 Eastman Wind Orchestra Directed by Dr. Mark Scatterday performing This World Alive
February 27, 2014 Texas Tech Concert Band Directed by Duane Hill performing Goodnight, Goodnight
February 28, 2014 Eureka High School Wind Ensemble Directed by Todd Stalter performing Goodnight, Goodnight
March 7, 2014 McNeese State University Wind Symphony Conducted by Dr. Daniel Belongia performing This World Alive
March 8, 2014 McNeese State University Honor Band Conducted by Dr. Daniel Belongia performing Goodnight, Goodnight
March 21, 2014 Bethel College Concert Choir - ACDA Southwestern Division Convention Directed by Dr. William Eash performing Filled With His Voice
March 22, 2014 Monroe, NY All-County Honor Band Directed by Dr. Jared Chase performing Magnolia Star
March 27, 2014 Macon County High School Band Directed by Mr. Joey Wilburn performing Goodnight, Goodnight
March 28, 2014 University of British Columbia Concert Winds Directed by Dr. Christopher Unger performing This World Alive
April 12, 2014 Tennessee All-State Band Directed by Dr. John Lynch premiering Journeys
April 24, 2014 UCONN Wind Ensemble Directed by Dr. Jeffrey Renshaw performing This World Alive
May 10, 2014 Seton Hill University Symphonic Winds Directed by Dr. Reed Chamberlin performing This World Alive
May 10, 2014 College of St. Rose Symphony Orchestra Directed by Dr. David Bebe performing The Star Spangled Banner
May 13, 2014 University of Delaware Wind Ensemble Directed by Dr. Chad Nicholson performing Flash Black
Thanks to all these ensembles and directors who are including my work on their programs this fall! If I left out a performance, please email me and I will add it to this list! October 7, 2013 Escape Ten Virginia Tech University performing Chorale Variations (world premiere)
In 2012, Dr. William Eash and the Bethel College Concert Choir (North Newton, KS) commissioned Filled With His Voice for mixed choir, saxophone, and piano. They have since performed the piece several times and will be including the work on their program tomorrow at the Kansas Music Educators Association Conference. Best wishes to Dr. Eash and the choir for a great experience at KMEA! When: February 21, 2013 - 2:35 PM Where: Century II MJT Little Theater, Wichita, KS More details: See a full schedule of KMEA here