Remaining Vestiges (2015)
As a composer, I feel that it’s my duty to constantly be looking forward; trying new things, exploring new sounds, and generally redefining what music means to me. This shift in my thinking occurred during my time in graduate school, and it still dominates the way I approach composing today. However, there are times that projects necessitate looking back on what my work used to be like: Remaining Vestiges is one such project, and that action of “looking back” is where the title of this piece comes from.
This work is presented in two movements. The first movement, trace, begins with chant-like music passing between the tuba and piano, and passes through meditative musical scenes meant to evoke thoughts of nature and nostalgia. The second, maker, contrasts the first movement with aggressive, scherzo-like music.
In many ways, this piece is a personal reflection on the changes that took place in my personal and creative life in graduate school. And while this piece is a return to an older style for me, it isn’t simply looking back: it is a combination of new ideas, a more refined approach, and the spirit of music I wrote early on in my composing life.