Concert Works

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Always In the Music

For concert band + solo voice, c. 6’45” - 2018

Both High School Edition and Junior High Edition available:

“Always In The Music was commissioned as a way of saying goodbye for the retirement of Ms. Kathryn Spula, my music teacher at Placerita Junior High School. Ms. Spula will always hold a place in my heart as the woman that gave me my very first experience of having one of my own pieces played by a group of live musicians (funnily enough, it was an arrangement of music from The Legend of Zelda), and for giving me my first conductor’s baton. This piece has two distinct themes - the opening piano solo melody that comes back multiple times throughout the piece, and the Hart High School alma mater, in tribute to the next step in the junior high schoolers’ lives. Also present are a few references to the above- mentioned Legend of Zelda medley I had written for the Placerita ensemble all those years ago. There are two versions of this piece: one for junior high-level bands and one for high school-grade groups. The two pieces are meant to be compatible and can be played simultaneously for maximum effect. The piano part is meant to be very loose and non-linear, treated like a fake book for pop music, which was a heavy inspiration for this piece’s emphasis on vocal soloist. The vocal part can also be transposed by octaves based on the vocal range of the singer.”


Syzygy (A Cosmic Odyssey)

For wind ensemble, c. 8’00” - 2017/18

“Syzygy is a rare word, usually found as an astronomical term. It is defined as “the alignment of three celestial bodies,” typically in reference to the Earth, the Moon, and the Sun, such as in the form of a full moon, a new moon, or, in this particular case, an eclipse. On August 21, 2017, the entirety of North America and regions of the neighboring countries and continents stopped to bare witness to a total solar eclipse, an event that is about as rare as the title of this piece. In that small window of time, there was an incredible unity of mankind, all sharing a single, beautiful moment together in this giant shadow. After that event, I realized that music was the perfect parallel: when people listen to music, for that brief moment, they let themselves out of their shackles and put aside their judgments to allow their emotions to escape. In summation, that is exactly what music can so easily be: a momentary escape into absolute freedom. During this astronomical alignment, this “syzygy,” everybody seemed to have the same idea, and really, what a great idea it was. After all, what better place could someone choose to escape all of their problems in than space?”

Performed by the California State University, Northridge (CSUN) Wind Ensemble under Professor Larry Stoffel at the Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts - November 29, 2018.


Inferno

For orchestra, c. 3’00” - 2016/17

Score is property of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and is unavailable for purchase.

Performed by the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Walt Disney Concert Hall as a part of the Symphonies for Schools concert series, conducted by Christopher Rountree - March 10, 2017.


Cry For Love

For SSA choir + piano, c. 4’00” - 2016

“Cry For Love is a piece written to reach people in a purely emotional sense. When dealing with the hardships of life, it can be difficult to see the light at the end of the tunnel, and yet so easy to give up and think of past mistakes, to have to weave through a constant barrage of hardship and difficulty. In the end, it may eventually even feel as though struggle and gradual suffering is the norm, but there is always a time of passing, and to embrace that moment where we can move on and see the happiness and beauty again, we must have that will to change. By finding forms of emotional expression, for any and every individual person in the world, we can let those feelings of chaos and distraught fade away, and replace them with our own inner happiness and warmth and, most of all, love. There is no sense in looking into the past for answers, when the present is here and now, and within the present, we can find the change in ourselves needed to make a better future, because love is, and has always been, the answer.”

Performed by the National Children’s Chorus (Los Angeles Division) under Assistant Conductor Alexander Lloyd Blake at Royce Hall (UCLA) - May 10, 2017.


A Storm’s Passing (Rise and Fall of a New Horizon)

For wind ensemble, c. 6’15” - 2016

“One can imagine a sunlit horizon, with a calm and warm melody, and slowly, it is overtaken by gradually rolling clouds, foreshadowing what is to come. Suddenly, the storm attacks; lightning strikes, thunder claps, wind whips at the landscape, and all of the light is blocked out by a thick, dark ceiling of clouds. Soon, the storm rages into a controlled downpour, and in the eye of the storm, one can see all the chaos around them. Then, as the final bolt of lightning strikes the ground, a blinding flash fills the air, and as the world returns once again, the rain has stopped, the intensity has vanished, and all seems anew. The clouds begin to part, and beams of light pass through onto the world around, a feeling of rebirth surrounding. Finally, the clouds part, and above the blazing setting sun shines a rainbow as glorious and colorful as one can be.”

Performed by the California State University, Northridge (CSUN) Wind Ensemble under Professor Larry Stoffel at the Plaza Del Sol Performance Hall - November 29, 2016.


Adventures in Life

For SSAATTBB choir, c. 4’00” - 2016

“This piece was written in dedication to Mr. O, my physical education teacher in eighth grade and one of the most influential and inspirational figures I have ever been lucky enough to have met. The text was written around the stories he would tell us of his own life, and the phrase “Be Extraordinary,” a phrase that he would always tell us and one that I carry with me each and every day.”

Performed by members of the Los Angeles Master Chorale under Luke McEndarfer inside the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion - May 21, 2016.