Quinta
for recorder quartet and electronics
(for Flûte Alors!)

In writing for Flute Alors!, I knew that I wanted to blur the boundaries between polyphony, monophony, and heterophony. Being somewhat of a glutton for punishment, I also wanted to try making long crescendo-decrescendo gestures with an instrument that typically has a relatively narrow dynamic range. This experimentation was enabled by the trust and enthusiasm of my flautist collaborators. The electronics serve to unify the texture, which might otherwise be rendered too atomized by the COVID measures-induced physical distancing; they consist of an echo timed to the dotted eighth rhythm of the flautists’ steady eighth-note pulse, creating a cascade of syncopated sixteenth notes, a “trick” perhaps first popularized by Pink Floyd in their song “Run Like Hell”.

(M)élodie no. 1
for violin and piano
(for Marc Djokic and Julien LeBlanc)

Written for the amazing Djokic-LeBlanc Duo, the tune for (M)élodie no. 1 came to me one day in the Autumn of 2016, while noodling around on a public piano I came across while ambling about with my then-newborn daughter Elodie sleeping snuggled to my chest in a baby-wrap. For four years, this simple little fragment stuck with me, and though I tried here and there to make something of it, it never really found a home until this commission, where it seemed to suddenly wake up and demand to be played by Marc Djokic, who had recently become a new dad himself.

Sarabande
for viola da gamba duo
(for Mélisande Corriveau and Margaret Little)

For this piece for Mélisande Corriveau and Margaret Little of early music ensemble L'Harmonie des saisons, I was inspired by an interpretation I heard of the sarabande in Bach’s Partita No.1, BWV 825 (the performer of which I do not know) which was played so slowly that immense chasms of time seemed to gape in between each of a sarabande’s three beats. I wanted to compose something that had a similar type of temporal elasticity and wide-openness.

CAMMAC Musical Postcards

Last Fall I was commissioned by the CAMMAC Music Center (with the support of the Canada Council of the Arts) to compose three pieces for some of Canada's most renowned chamber music ensembles: the Djokic-LeBlanc duo, L'Harmonie des saisons, and Flûte Alors! The videos of these amazing performances should be published shortly (stay tuned). In the meanwhile, here is a behind-the-scenes look at the recording session last October.