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My next project is something I have been wanting to do for many years and it is finally taking place in Ashland on April 1. Here is what I wrote about it in Rogue Valley Symphony's concert brochure:

The radical simplicity of Arvo Pärt was born as a gesture of defiance against the complexities of the mid-20th century music. With Passio, this approach is downright revolutionary. Pärt took the most dramatic of the Gospel settings and set it as an austere recount of an ascetic. The only musical material that differs from the bulk of the work is the initial statement by the chorus (literally, the very first sentence of the Gospel) and then again, the closing line of the text. How then does this composition manage to hold our attention?


Pärt achieves an otherworldly effect here: he makes music the star by not drawing attention to it. The work comes across as a meditation. An alternative reading suggests a post-traumatic state. For many of its adherents, the central tenet of Christendom is so dramatically impactful that it can only be recalled while abstaining from emotions. 


Finding how this music impacts you is what makes it so appealing.  In our production, we are heightening the mystery by staging Passio theatrically. Using lights, costumes and staging to tell this story has long been a creative dream of mine. Thank you to everyone who helped to make it come true!


Let us now leave the noise of the ordinary behind and revel in the quest to resolve life’s ultimate questions.


2023/2024 SEASON REVEAL! 

The 2023/24 season of the Rogue Valley Symphony has been revealed! Here is a short video introducing the season's programs. Apart from the plethora of great music and the exquisite roster of soloists, I am most excited about our newly minted Composer In Residence, David Serkin Ludwig. David is an in-demand composer, who also serves as Dean and Director of Music at The Juilliard School. He was just awarded the 2023 American Academy Arts and Letters Award in Music

I will look forward to welcoming you all in our concert halls in 2023/24.

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