I was extremely excited to learn this month that I’d placed in both a national and international orchestral composition prize. The Laws of Motion has been selected as one of four finalists in the international Tampa Bay Symphony Orchestra Composition Competition. Rapids and Ripples has won runner up in a national composition competition. Details of this haven’t been formally announced, but I look forward to sharing more.
In other news, Warhol in The Tenderloin – which I wrote last year for Ensemble Offspring – has received a performance from the Sydney Conservatorium Modern Music Ensemble. It was great to see this piece getting another outing at a mask-wearing concert in October and to get this nice recording.
Also in October, I was fortunate to have Embers workshopped by the Hobart Wind Symphony and the Sydney Conservatorium Wind Symphony. With so many restrictions on performances (especially by large ensembles [and particularly large ensembles with wind instruments!]) it was unexpected to have one workshop let alone two. I’ve made a tiny snippet of the rough workshop recording available until a proper performance can happen.
And, it was with satisfaction (and not a little relief) that I finished my piano suite Light and Transfiguration this month. This piece took seven months from go to whoa and, conceptually, it’s one of the most ambitious works I’ve written. Plans are afoot to record this with a really top-notch pianist early in 2021.
All in all, 2020 has been…well, you know how it’s been. It’s not been the single best year to be an early career composer. But then it’s not been the best year to be in any field apart from, presumably, video conferencing software development. And, in the scheme of a global pandemic that is wreaking havoc on the lives of so many, there are far worse things than not being able to get your very niche music played. I’m extremely grateful to have had even a couple of performances and workshops this year, and really appreciate those that have facilitated it. My best wishes to all who read this. Happy holidays and may 2021 treat you well.