Starscape

 

Instrumentation: Violin, Cello, Piano
Duration:                 7 minutes
Year:                           2014

Complete Performance:

Land’s End Ensemble | University of Toronto New Music Festival 2016
Venue: Walter Hall, Toronto, Canada
Recording Engineer: Peter Olsen

Program Notes:

Starry Night over the Rhone - Van Gogh
Starry Night over the Rhone – Van Gogh

When writing this piano trio in the summer of 2014, I was inspired by the paintings of Van Gogh such as his well-known “Starry Night” (1889) and its lesser known cousin, “Starry Night over the Rhone” (1888). This encounter with Van Gogh was not my first, but only most recently was I drawn to his paintings and noticed the juxtaposition of the fragile stars in the sky against a terrifying and slightly surreal nightscape. I was moved by his depiction of the universe’s beauty and desolation in balance, and sought to express that within this piece.

For Starscape, this piece is about the progression from light to darkness, from peace to chaos. I imagined myself looking out into the sky and taking in the stars. The stars begin to move closer and closer, until their blinding light reaches a climax before fading away into the distance.

Performance History:

– Aug 26th, 2016: Locrian Chamber Players @ Riverside Church, New York
– Mar 22nd, 2016: TEMPO New Music Ensemble @ University of Maryland, College Park
– Feb 2nd, 2016: Land’s End Chamber Ensemble @ University of Toronto Walter Hall
– Mar 2nd, 2015: Land’s End Chamber Ensemble @ University of Calgary Rozsa Centre
–  Nov 15th, 2014: Ensemble Contemporain de Montreal @ University of Toronto Walter Hall, Toronto, ON. (Reading Session)

Awards:

– Winner of the Locrian Chamber Players’ 2015 Call for Scores
– Winner of the University of Maryland TEMPO 2016 Call for Scores
– Land’s End Chamber Ensemble 15th National Young Composers’ Competition, 2nd Prize

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