we can do better…

I didn’t start out writing music that was influenced at all by world affairs. My music was more internalized, just writing down the sounds I was hearing, and trying to write as beautiful music as I am capable of writing. However, over the past decade, more and more of my music has been composed in direct response to current events – in protest of the direction in which our world seems headed, particularly the rise of political populism, both here in the U.S. and abroad. The world, since the end of WW II, seemed, despite ups and downs, generally headed in a good direction – but no longer. How people, and by extension, nations, should behave, always seemed simple to me. But, apparently not to others, who increasingly are filled with fear and anxiety – and are acting out the worst tribalistic instincts that have plagued humanity throughout history. A violent, sordid history whose lessons we never seem to learn. It seems easy to do better than this, but somehow, humankind, in the whole, never fails to disappoint. The weak of mind are led by the worst.

Music written either in protest of the worst or in hope for the best —

The Violin Sings in a Common Language (soprano, violin)
Blossoms (soprano, viola d’amore, cello)
Dreaming of a Better World (string quartet)
Lonely Voices (string quartet)
Border Crossings (2 violins)
The Children are Crying (saxophone quartet)
The Children are Still Crying (saxophone quartet)
Middle Ground (string quartet)
Afterwards, there were no more wars (string quartet)
An Ode to the Possibility of Peace (clarinet, violin, cello)
In Praise of Reason (cello, 2 horns, string orchestra)
Against War (orchestra)
Declaration of Peace (chamber orchestra)
Pavanne to a World Without War (string orchestra)