Prelude and Fugue for Four Trombones

This might be the earliest work of mine that I still hold as performable.  It is originally scored for two Tenor Trombones, Bass Trombone, and Contrabass Trombone, though the Contrabass Trombone can be played by a second Bass.

This work showed some of my early counterpoint training.  The prelude is a slow and solemn choral that shifts to the direct and noble fugue in A minor.

The work has been played a few times, but sadly, all recordings are now lost.

The work is currently for sale here.

 

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Octet for Double Reeds

This work is by far my most complex in terms of counterpoint and complexity of rhythm.  It comes after I was engaged to play a performance of Schoenberg’s Chamber Symphony 1, which has immensely complicated rhythms and phrasing.  The work is very slow throughout,  but this is countered by the faster rhythms.  The final coda is the only time in the piece to finally center on a single tonality.

The work is scored for a standard eight-person orchestral double reed ensemble (3 Oboes, English Horn, 3 Bassoons, and Contrabassoon).

The work has yet to be performed.

 

Adagio for Strings

My Adagio for Strings is my earliest performable piece (at least the earliest piece I’ll still allow to be performed).  It dates from 2002-2003.  It is a somber piece in C-sharp minor.  At the time of composition, I was heavily studying Bruckner’s adagios from his symphonies.  I was also experimenting for form, particularly in the mathematical sense.  Every phrase in the piece follows, in some way, the Fibonacci series.

This is one of my few pieces for orchestra not involving a soloist.

Below is a performance from 2004 with an ensemble of friends and myself as conductor.

Piano Trio

This work from 2003 probably has more performances than any of my other compositions.  It was written for several friends while I was an undergrad.  At the time, I was heavily studying Beethoven, whose fiery nature can be heard pulsating through the piece.

The sheet music can be purchased here:

https://www.sheetmusicplus.com/title/trio-for-violin-cello-and-piano/20270792

Below is a performance from 2003.  Since this recording, several major cuts have been made to the piece.

 

Quintet for Winds

This short, happy work was written in 2007 while I was playing regularly in a woodwind quintet.  It is for standard woodwind quintet (though the part for clarinet is for A Clarinet and not Bb) and in one movement.  It is a great showpiece for all members of the quintet, as every player has major solos.  It is much more lyrical in nature than technical.

Compositions for Sale!

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been putting several of my smaller composition up for sale on Sheet Music Plus.

Chaccone for Baritone Saxophone and Strings

Romance for Bass Saxophone and Strings

Sonatina for Oboe and Piano

Der Totentanz for Woodwind Ensemble

Quintet for Winds

Forest Scenes for Tenor Bassoon and Three Marimbas

Prelude and Fugue for Four Trombones

Trio for Violin, Cello, and Piano

Short, Happy Piece for Oboe and Cello

More will be coming soon!

 

Symphony (1) for Double Reeds

Over the years, I’ve started 7 symphonies, but, to date, this is the only symphony I’ve completed.  In some regards, it’s the least symphonic of all the symphonies I’ve attempted, as it is a single long movement and scored entirely for an ensemble of double reeds.

I wrote the piece fairly quickly in perhaps six weeks’ time.  The impetus was visiting the International Double Reed Society’s annual convention in 2006.  I was surrounded by double reed players of all calibers.  A year earlier, at the convention, I heard a live performance of Grainger’s rarely performed Hill Song 1 for a large double reed ensemble (and a few Piccolos for good measure) and was stuck by the sororities that came from the ensemble.

While at the conference, I had the opportunity to play and hear many of the more obscure members of the oboe and bassoon families and decided to include them all in a single work.

The work has multiple sections that function like separate movements but all flow together.  Each section has a different character: pastoral, romantic, dance-like, agitated, etc.

Instrumentation

  • F Piccolo Oboe
  • 4 Oboes
  • Oboe d’Amore
  • 2 English Horns
  • Bass Oboe
  • Alto Bassoon
  • Tenor Bassoon
  • 4 Bassoons
  • 2 Contrabassoon

(Performing edition)

(General MIDI edition with score)