Quick composing update: I'm currently hard at work writing my first string quartet. Because I got it into my head that I wanted text involved with this quartet (and I couldn't look back for some odd reason), I am now scurrying about the internet maintaining poetry rights. Ah, the joys of creativity and "art".
Freedom Songs premiere went quite well. Members from the first class of Carnage Middle were in attendance which consisted of a former Vice-President of UNC, an Alvin Ailey dancer, and a basketball player from the Jimmy V. years at NC State. Very humbling. The piece is now available for purchase here.
I'm also getting really deep back into my Steve Reich catalogue. I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with that music, mostly because I find Reich's rather blunt views on music somewhat similar to that of early Pierre Boulez. Reich has, to some degree, dismissed music between 1750 to about 1913. That's all good and well (not my own opinion) but to say you absolutely refuse to listen to it...it leaves a bad taste in my mouth. Not to go on a tangent about composer's musical opinions, BUT, I always find it difficult to separate a musical personality from the music itself. This goes further back with composers like Wagner who desperately needs the audience to separate his radical anti-Semitic views from his deeply spiritual music. It is hard for me to not listen to Boulez without seeing a giant middle finger to the "standard rep." which he wanted to, at one point, abandon. Just some thoughts. (If you are not familiar with Reich, here is Tehillim and Music for 18 Musicians)