Featured on 1 Track Podcast

This week, I was featured on Anthony Joseph Lanman‘s excellent 1 Track Podcast. The show presents musicians with one basic question: If you could introduce listeners to your music by playing them just one piece, what would it be and why?

When Anthony invited me to be a guest on the podcast, I knew right away that I wanted to share Trigger, my mini-opera about domestic violence because of the important topic it examines.  You can listen to our conversation and hear some audio excerpts of the music here.  If you’d like to watch the full premiere performance, a video is included below.


A Response to The Election

Like many of us, I awoke Wednesday in shock and horror, unsure how to face the future a relatively small portion of our country has chosen for us.  I am still processing the events of this week and probably will be for a long time, but yesterday I realized that I have been working through many of the issues brought up by the election in my music of the past year.  In addition to writing a chamber opera about domestic abuse, I have set Walt Whitman’s short text below in two different pieces:

“Of equality—As if it harmed me, giving others the same chances 
and rights as myself—as if it were not indispensable to my own rights that others possess the same.”

Whitman’s words have stayed with me, and I hope that others will be similarly struck by them as we move ahead.  If anyone is interested in either setting of Whitman’s text or my chamber opera, I am making the performance materials for all three works free for the next month.  The pieces can be found by accessing the links below.


Video of “Trigger”

A video of my new mini-opera “Trigger” is now available on YouTube!  The work was written for soprano Afton Forsberg and the 2016 Opera from Scratch workshop, where it was premiered by Afton and pianist Simon Docking on Aug. 28, 2016.

The composition was inspired by an incident from the spring of 2014 in Nova Scotia: a woman filed a domestic assault complaint against her boyfriend, and a local law enforcement officer accidentally left a voicemail message at the victim’s number where officers can be heard discussing the case.  In the recording (which is available online), an officer can be heard disparaging the woman, implying that she may be lying about her injuries, and asking if she deserved to get hit.  I was very disturbed by the incident, and my reactions to it ultimately became realized in Trigger.