UNWRAPPING FORTUNE: A NEW OPERA (in progress)
Below is the presentation for the Queens Council on the Arts New Work Grant from 2020. Act 1 was presented live at the Sounds of Arts Festival in 2017 and Act 2 is presented as a video recording, due to restrictions on public gatherings during the pandemic. Act 3 is still to come!
Act 1 is about 25 minutes, Act 2 is about 20 minutes in duration, and there is an introduction by the presenter and myself introducing my work.
The YouTube link below presents UNWRAPPING FORTUNE as the opening piece.
AN AMERICAN IN SHANGHAI for orchestra, written for the OneWorld Symphonic Festival Orchestra. Inspired by my time living abroad in Shanghai and influenced by Gershwin, Copland, and Chinese folk tunes. Premiered on July 6, 2019 at Falls Church Episcopal Church. Recording courtesy of The Abernathy Family.
JAZZ BARTOK for jazz quintet
I’M IN THE MOOD FOR SPRING for jazz quintet
RATS OF NEW YORK for viola and piano. Dedicated to the Instagram Rats of NY living the dream and running the rat race alongside us New Yorkers.
I. Metrocard Rat
II. Henny Rat
III. Pizza Rat
Premiered on June 25, 2019 at The National Opera Center during our Composers Collective concert. Emely Phelps, piano and Chelsea Wimmer, viola.
BEAUTY & THE BEAST FANTASY-OVERTURE
Beauty & the Beast Fantasy-Overture borrows from the concept of Tchaikovsky’s Romeo & Juliet Fantasy-Overture. It is a free form piece, with sections pertaining to the characters and drama of the story. The sections include an introduction, Rustic Village Scene, Beauty’s Aria, Beast’s Entrance, Be Mahler’s Guest, and Beauty’s Waltz. Influences of Tchaikovsky, Stravinsky, and Alan Menken can be heard throughout. The original animated Disney film was the first movie from my childhood to feature a leading character who led with her brains and not her beauty. First performance March 31, 2019 at The National Opera Center.
BRONX ZOO PASTORALE: Bronx Zoo Pastorale was written for the dynamic viola duo Folie a Deux (www.fa2violas.com), is based on memories I have from my visit there. The park is an amazing display of wilderness in the concrete jungle. The piece opens with a short introduction and then musical descriptions follow. The Lovebirds, Mandrills, Jurassic Exhibit, Penguins, and a Pastorale. Several influences can be heard in this piece- some tango, some Beethoven, and some Stravinsky. Performed on February 13, 2015 at Flushing Town Hall.
MaWeiHua: Piece for Tenor, Violin, and Piano is based on my experience of living abroad in China. It is a piece in three movements which utilize two Chinese-style folk tunes. The first movement is a musical drama containing a folk tune and an 8 note recurring theme which acts as neutral commentary of the drama. The second movement has two pentatonic folk tunes layered in the instruments while the tenor has a complementary, somewhat liturgical and modal line. The third movement contains a blend of the two folk tunes which get passed to all three parts, with the tenor finally singing one of the folk tunes. The text was written and compiled by Marc McFadyen, a New Zealander living in China. The biographical text is about his roommate, Ma WeiHua, a formerly legless and homeless beggar in China who was pulled from a life of misery and given new legs as well as a new life. This piece was premiered in Paris, France on July 28, 2004.
4 Hopkins Songs for Soprano and Piano
4 Hopkins Songs is a song cycle based on the poetry of Gerard Manley Hopkins. It was written for Raina Simons, who first approached me with the poetry. This piece became my Master’s thesis at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music
The Four Dragons: A Puppet Show
This puppet show was created as an undergraduate project in the College of Creative Studies at UC Santa Barbara. It is based on a Chinese Folk Tale and narrated by Lea Leong Ringler.