(commissioned by the Oasi Trio + The Post Cortona Premieres Project)
About “Different Lenses”
“Different Lenses” was composed in 2019 and commissioned by Oasi Trio as part of the Post-Cortona Premieres Project. This piece is scored for violin, clarinet (Bb), and piano.
I first met the members of Oasi Trio (Claire Niederberger [violin], Kathryn Vetter [clarinet], and Magnus Villanueva [piano]) at the Cortona Sessions for New Music in Cortona, Italy in the summer of 2018. We quickly became friends and shortly after the Sessions, they formed the Oasi Trio. Once the Trio decided to begin commissions and tours, I was fortunate enough to have them ask me to compose a piece for them.
“Different Lenses” is arranged in five short sections, with each depicting a scene of what you might see through each different type of lens.
“ALTITUDE” is a quintet for vibraphone, violin, Bb clarinet, tenor saxophone, and piano inspired by the music of Socrates Garcia, Bob Brookmeyer, and Nashville jam-band Dynamo. The work contains two movements that may be performed in succession or independently.
“ALTITUDE” is based thematically on two dramatically different types of mountains I had visited in years prior to composing this piece: mountains at high altitudes in Colombia + mountains (fjords) at sea level in Norway.
I. Mountains (Colombia)
This movement is upbeat and festive, inspired by the grassy mountains and wonderful people in Santa Rosa de Osos and Medellin, Colombia.
II. Fjords (Scandinavia)
The second movement has a soft nature and humble joy that encapsulates the beauty of the Scandinavian landscape and people. While this movement still draws some influence from jazz, it is also inspired by the music of Peter Gabriel.
“ALTITUDE” is great for students looking for a chamber piece that covers the musical spectrum from fun + upbeat to fragile + beautiful all in a harmonic language accessible to any audience.
“Windows” is a brass quintet (2 trumpets, French horn, trombone, and bass trombone) made up of three movements (I. Glass, II. Screen, III. Air) based on three different types of windows/elements of windows. The entire work is about 15 minutes long. The inspiration of the piece stems from one of the marimba solos I was learning for graduate school at the time I composed this piece: “Reflections on the Nature of Water” by Jacob Druckman. Prior to learning the piece, my professor (Ji Hye Jung) told me to listen to another piece by Jacob Druckman called “Windows.” Upon hearing only the name “Windows” I instantly thought I knew what it would sound like. Druckman’s “Windows” sounds nothing like what imagined it would. So, the brass quintet I’ve written, “Windows,” is the piece that I expected Druckman’s piece to be prior to listening to that piece, or any other by Jacob Druckman.
I decided to write for bass trombone instead of tuba because I love the sound of the bass trombone.
Imagine giant panes of glass floating in space. Perfectly clean panes against a completely black background. There is a small source of light coming from somewhere beyond the glass. The light reflects off of the panes of glass as they rotate in space, sometimes defining the edges of the panes, sometimes causing the panes to appear invisible. This is movement I. Massive panes of glass floating in and out of existence.
The canon ostinato in the two trumpets is a rhythmic interpretation of a screen over a window. The trombones and French horn act as insects zipping onto and around the window (particularly with the glissandi).
This movement is an open window on the most peaceful of days. The gentle breeze from the outdoors, the purest moments of nature.