Works

Large Ensemble


Chamber Ensemble

Double Bind (2017) for Two Pitched Instruments (6' to 10')

Double Bind was written in collaboration with performers Luke Ellard and Jessica Stearns from the Nova Ensemble at the University of North Texas. This is an indeterminate work which uses Annette Vande Gorne’s ideas on the categories of energy models as improvisational cues for the different sections. Double Bind is my first experiment with composing a space in which two talented performers and improvisers could meet and communicate with a significant amount of freedom.
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Porous (2016) for Percussion Quartet (7'45")

The terrifying impact and long-term implications of the water crisis in Flint, Michigan along with the steadily increasing use of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) and the water table pollution it creates, have caused me to think recently about our connections to the basic essential requirements of human life – edible food, drinkable water and breathable air. This piece is a meditation on the fluid nature of the borders between us and the physical environment we inhabit. As humans, our bodies are made up of at least 50% water at any time. The air we breathe condenses into the water that we drink, and evaporates back into the air that we breathe. This is mirrored by the ways that rhythmic phrases seep from one performer to another, and by the act of returning to the opening material. The boundaries between us are porous, and poor us for forgetting that.
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Tessellations (2016) for Oboe, Viola and Piano (5'30")

Tessellations was written for oboist Lindsay Wiley in 2016. It features the unusual oboe trio combination of oboe, viola and piano used by Loeffler and Klughardt. The piece is based on permutations of a single descending tone row. In mathematics, “tessellation” is when a plane is filled using repeating patterns (called tiles) of one identical geometric shape. Many of us are familiar with this concept from things like M.C. Escher’s designs in his series of Metamorphosis woodcuts, for example. I think that the idea of tessellations is an apt metaphor for working with tone rows, and I was inspired by the way Escher treated the tiles as mutable even as they maintained the overall pattern.
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Variations for Woodwind Quintet (2015) for Woodwind Quintet (9'30")

While writing this piece, I was interested in exploring the range of sounds and moods possible with a woodwind quintet all coming from a single thematic idea. It is a set of eleven variations on a theme, and on a large scale is organized into a three-part form connected by two musical bridges. The variations range in mood from upbeat and pleasantly flowing, to melancholy, to hymn-like.
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Solo Works

A Spire (2016) for Solo Flute (1')

A Spire was written for Iwona Glinka in the Spring of 2016. As the title suggests, the piece is a tightly compressed exploration of striving, like an arrow (flèche) reaching for the sky. Ms. Glinka's recording of this miniature is available through Sarton Records.
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Six Views of Li Bai (Li Po) (2015) for Solo Piano (7'15")

Li Bai (also known as Li Po) was a poet during the Tang Dynasty (8th century) in China and is regarded as one of the most important figures in Chinese literature. Among other things, his writing is known for the use of incredible imagery and for technical virtuosity. In addition to his works, Li Bai is known for being an extravagant and multi-faceted personality. Stories about his personal life and various escapades paint a picture of someone wild and unbounded, yet he was admired by both Emperors and priests. I have enjoyed Li Bai’s poetry for some time, and eventually, inspired by paintings such as Monet’s Rouen Cathedral series and Hokusai’s 36 Views of Mount Fuji, I tried to capture some of these different and often conflicting aspects of the man behind the work. In this piece I tried to illustrate contrasting pairs of these different impressions of Li Bai, and organized them into three short mini-movements – hence the “six views”.
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Electroacoustic

Playground (2015) for String Quartet and Max/MSP patch (19')

Playground is a work for string quartet in two movements. Sandbox, the first movement, is an exploration of the string quartet’s sound world, building up various possibilites and knocking them down to build something new. The second movement, Swing Sets, introduces a new element - sampled sounds from a child’s playground. These sounds along with the quartet’s parts are manipulated via the computer, which acts as a hidden ‘fifth’ member of the quartet playing back fragments of memories.
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3 Pieces for Clarinet and Computer (2015) for Solo Clarinet in Bb and Max/MSP patch (11')

3 Pieces for Clarinet and Computer is a set of short works involving the possibilities open to a live performer interacting with a computer as performer. The computer part was created using Max/MSP software. In each movement the computer is listening to the clarinet and responding in some way. In Mirror Mirror, the clarinet is working with the computer in periodically adding loops to the performance, and is listening to the performer and responding to what it hears by altering the recordings in small ways. In the second piece, Cycle Mod, the clarinet and computer start trying to cooperate and collaborate, each one contributing musical phrases of their choice to the piece. The final movement Crosstalk involves the computer and clarinet in a dialog – listening to each other, finishing each other’s statements, adding additional comments, interrupting, and eventually coming to a common conclusion.
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Acousmatic

Into Entropy (2017) 2-channel fixed media (5'06")

This piece began as a series of improvisations with the PureData program earGram, developed by Gilberto Bernardes. I then shaped the material from these improvisations into a piece which generally progresses from order into entropy. A single sound quickly becomes a complex, rhythmic sound mass. That conglomerate then undergoes different transformations as if we were zooming into the various layers of the sound mass and exploring them.
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The Stranger Next Door (2014) 2-channel fixed media (4'44")

The Stranger Next Door was a commission for a dance work of the same name created by Mariah Rieves at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts in April of 2014. This piece features drum kit improvisations by Randy Seals.
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