Compositions

inner forms

For solo violin, electronics, and movement; 2019

Commissioned by and composed for Ilana Waniuk. Premiered in Toronto at Array Space on June 27, 2019. Recorded by Kelley Mitchell.

inner forms explores relationships with one's Self: facades we try and uphold, a vulnerability that at times gets exposed, restlessness in our minds and body, trying to find moments of reflection. This piece evolves through subtle movements that form as an extension from playing the instrument and how these movements can build in intense physicality with sounds disintegrating, focusing on only the physical. inner forms highlights and exaggerates the presence of the musician in the space and questions how does this change their relationship to the instrument; what is exposed when the musician separates themselves from the violin?

density swells upclose in breath

For two pianos; 2019

Commissioned by and composed for La Fiammata Piano Duo with support from the Ontario Arts Council. Premiered in Toronto at Mazzoleni Concert Hall on May 31, 2019.

density swells upclose in breath is inspired by the poem “Unlocking” by Alice B. Fogel. This piece examines extremes, both in scope and magnification of changing pulses that push and pull between both musicians, continually reacting to one another. What happens when these momentums break and fall apart? What do they dissolve into? The piece's tightly woven material continuously alters in dark and light, sharp and subtle, and at times opens up to spacious moments, reflecting on this particular passage from the poem:

Their shadows pull you to the shore.
Their size fills your lungs with sky.

out of grains, within clouds

For two marimbas, sandpaper, and electronics; 2019

Commissioned by Din of Shadows, composed for Taktus. Premiered in Toronto at the Music Gallery on May 3, 2019, performed by Jonny Smith (perc.), Louis Pino (perc.), Angela Blumberg (choreographer, dancer), Ming-Bo Lam (dancer). Audio recorded by Paul Hodge; video recorded by Justin Moy

out of grains, within clouds is inspired by Painting No.147 by Spanish artist Luis Feito that uses oil paint, sand, and pebbles on canvas. I was drawn to Feito’s use of an unconventional material that he transformed with paint and colour, creating forms of grit that emerge out of an opaque form. This piece explores Feito’s visual palette through elongated and suspended lines that move between blending rough, noisy textures and having abrasive sounds take over.

Responding to the music and its title, the choreography is inspired by human existence, the idea of being brought into this life, manifesting ourselves, and ceasing to exist, leaving (into clouds, perhaps). Fascinated by the spatial dimensions captured within the title, I perceived 'out of grains' as something close to the ground, a possibility for becoming, and 'into clouds' as a desire or motivation to become.

only edges

For solo piano and fixed electronics; 2018

Commissioned by Barbara Pritchard with support from Canada Council of the Arts. Premiered in Halifax at the Music Room on October 11, 2018 with additional performances at the University of Regina on Oct.13 and in Toronto on Oct.15 at the Canadian Music Centre.

Only edges explores the intensity of a barren landscape—overwhelmed by extreme heat—exposing the vulnerable to frequent disturbance. There is a sense of desolate space that always lingers throughout the transformations that occur.

drifting, vividly

For mixed ensemble: alto saxophone, viola, percussion, piano, electronics, and two dancers; 2018

Choreographed by Angela Blumberg. Commissioned by Din of Shadows and premiered at Din of Shadows II on May 5, 2018, at Array Space in Toronto.

Performed by Olivia Shortt (sax), Emilie Gelinas-Noble (vla), Jonny Smith (perc), Markéta Ornova (pno), Angela Blumberg (choreographer, dancer), Ming-Bo Lam (dancer), and Julia Mermelstein (electronics).

Lighting by Renée Lear. Audio and video recording by Kelley Mitchell.

drifting vividly is inspired by situational and thought-based dreaming when the body and mind gradually slows down, letting go of the outside world and surrendering to stillness. The piece evolves from restless, disembodied gestures, to giving in and finding a connection to one’s body, allowing scattered thoughts and sounds from the outside environment to gradually dissolve into abstraction.

The choreography seeks to capture the music’s ongoing nature and steadiness as well as the subtle shifts and dramatic notions that reside underneath its surface.

Sunder

For flute, piano, and electronics; 2018

Commissioned and premiered by Amanda Lowry and Jason White on April 30, 2018, at Maureen Forrister Recital Hall in Waterloo, ON.

Sunder: split apart, or into pieces

This piece focuses on resonance, as background, foreground, as expansive sound, and it’s own disintegration. I was questioning how these trails or tail-ends of actions can imprint onto new formations; how can they change or influence new behaviour amongst the performers; can these imprints act as memories of previous material?

in turn

For orchestra; 2017

in turn explores depth and contraction of space in an environment that is in constant flux. There are sequences in natural phenomena that continually return but in different ways each time. There is subtlety in these changes and they are constantly prone to disruption, transforming and evolving this process into new paths.

Workshopped by the Toronto Symphony Orchestra a part of their Explore the Score Reading Session on January 12, 2019; 2nd prize winner in the Etobicoke Philharmonic Orchestra's 2018 Young Composers Competition.

Woven, Still

For multi-percussion and electronics; 2017

Commissioned by Caution Tape Sound Collective and premiered by Evan Bowen at Singles Vol.3 on October 21, 2017, at Arrayspace in Toronto. Supported by Ontario Arts Council through commissioning grant.

Woven, Still explores elements of ritualistic and habitual tendencies through two contrasting sound spaces that gradually influence the other. Some habits can be tightly wound and so ingrained in our bodies, almost as if one snaps or is pulled back into place when trying to let go. The dynamic of this tension slowly dissolves throughout the piece through an opening of space, allowing room to breathe and reflect.

wonted

Electroacoustic; 2017

definition of wonted – habitual; usual

wonted explores habitual sounds from daily routines, usually experienced as background. These sounds become the focus through warped and distorted perspectives until they are gradually revealed in their environment. There’s a juxtaposition between these activities and electronically sculpted sonorities that create underlining emotions behind the tasks at hand, invoking what might be there subconsciously.

wonted had its acousmatic premiere on March 24, 2018 at Spark to Stone Concert co-presented by Caution Tape Sound Collective and the Association of Canadian Women Composers at Array Space in Toronto.

Additional performances: March 1, 2019 at CEMI Circles International Festival of Experimental Music and Intermedia in Dalton, Texas; May 19, 2018 at the Canadian Music Centre in Toronto and May 20, 2018 at the Button Factory Arts in Waterloo, ON; November 17, 2017 at OUA Electroacoustic Music Festival in Osaka, Japan.

This piece has been featured on New Adventures in Sound Art's Deep Wireless 13 Compilation and placed third in Musicworks' 2017 International Electronic Music Competition.

into a landscape, unrest

For mixed ensemble: viola, bassoon, percussion, piano, and electronics; 2017

Commissioned by Caution Tape Sound Collective and premiered a part of Quintile on March 18 at Array Space in Toronto. Performed by Bianca Chambul (bsn), Evan Bowen (perc), Emilie Gelinas-Noble (vla), Jana Luksts (synth, electronics), Markéta Ornova (pno)

“Everything is impermanent and comes to an end. Every moment that comes into being is a moment of destruction” – Dzigar Kongtrul

into a landscape, unrest is inspired by the idea of how impermanent our surrounding and environments are from the very subtle to the more pronounced. There are cycles to how things form and transform according to what is present in the space. Our awareness guides what we deem to be background and foreground and this is continually changing as we experience one moment to the next. The piece plays with this shifting awareness and the expectation for things to continue as they were.

without ground

For flute, cello, and percussion; 2016

Commissioned and premiered by Blue Rider Ensemble at the Canadian Music Centre on March 10, 2017.

without ground explores qualities of vulnerability through delicate activity and unstable suspension. The piece evolves around the idea of experiencing fragility at the point of almost breaking. What happens when this fragile state does break and overwhelms all space? There is a complexity to how these qualities manifest through the lack of control and disorder of its groundless nature.

XIV

For soprano (voice) and live electronics; 2017

Composed for and premiered by Adanya Dunn (soprano) and Zach Clark (electronics) on Feb.1, 2017 at the Tranzac in Toronto.

This recording was performed by Clarisse Tonigussi, 2018. Recorded and mixed by Julia Mermelstein.

Additonal performances: October 6, 2018 at Grace United Church in Toronto. Performed by Clarisse Tonigussi, presented by Canadian Women Composers Project Seeing Sound Concert.

Text from the Tao Te Ching, chapter 14:

image without an image

subtle beyond all conception