Shifting Gears

Tuesday, May 19th, 2015

Dear Reader:

Is it really May, already? It’s such a cliché, but I really do feel sometimes that the calendar must be lying. April was a more typical month for me, with multiple concertos and recitals. Mostly traditional repertoire: Dvorak’s Cello Concerto, Haydn’s C Major Cello Concerto, Tchaikovsky Rococo Variations, Bach Suites… there were a few newer pieces mixed in as well, including my own “Riding Light”. In fact, that particular performance was one of the few in my life where my Cstring has had the audacity to snap during a juicy moment. Audiences seem to love that, although for me it’s just a pain to have to go grab another one and retune, then decide where to start again.

Along with all of that, April is also of course tax season, and every self-employed Musician knows just how long that can take. So between all of these things, plus other random tasks, I did not get as much done on my upcoming cello concerto as I’d like. Luckily, this month is dedicated to producing notes on paper!

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A Worthwhile Journey

Thursday, April 2nd, 2015

Dear Readers:

Thank you for joining me here as we embark on an exploration of musicians’ lives in today’s changing landscape. Over the last few years, I have been taking on projects and roles that I never dreamt would be a part of my professional life as a musician, and I see many of my colleagues redefining their musical career as well.

For many of us, this is uncertain territory. Leaving our practice rooms behind, entering the worlds of interdisciplinary collaborations, social experiments, entrepreneurial endeavors, and in general, a broader sense of creativity, we are making things up as we go.

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9 Questions about “On Grace”

Monday, January 6th, 2014

The following questions are taken from an interview with the Harris Theater about my residency with acclaimed actor Anna Deavere Smith where we will present our joint project, “On Grace”. Many thanks to the University of Chicago, U. of Chicago Presents, Joan Harris and the Harris Theater, and all of the other organizations and individuals who have made this residency possible.

1. You’ve been called a “classical rock star” by the press. Is that a moniker you embrace? I’ve gone through various phases in my relationship with this particular title. It’s one that I think each reader has a different reaction to, and perception of its meaning. At its best, it connotes a certain intensity and fearlessness that I certainly aspire to, and in that sense I could only hope to live up to the name.

Sonic Installation in Santa Barbara

Thursday, July 25th, 2013

The following is from a guest blog post I made for the Santa Barbara Museum of Art‘s blog. I had the wonderful experience of curating a “sonic installation” in their galleries this last Sunday, in collaboration with the Music Academy of the West. (to see the original post on the SBMA website, complete with pictures, click here.)

Last Sunday I had the unique opportunity to curate an event at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art as part of my residency at Music Academy of the West. I chose to create a “sonic installation”, placing chamber music in various galleries and organizing it in such a way as to have 3 simultaneous performances going at any given point in time during the 2-hour event. It was a rather ambitious project but came off well, in no small part due to the inspiring music making of the 28 MAW Fellows that performed. There were several decisions that I made in the course of putting the installation together that were designed to be thought provoking beyond that which is already in the music.


The Popper Project: Part Three (now it’s your turn)

Wednesday, December 19th, 2012

Here it is, the last Popper Etude. The big four-zero. A project that was supposed to take 40 weeks and only be seen by a handful of friends has turned into a three and a half year journey with more support and musical rewards than I ever could have imagined. The question now: What’s next?

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