Bozkır (2016) 

for string quartet

This piece is inspired by the endless steppes that span Eurasia—from Eastern Turkey until Western China. The title Bozkır literally means ‘steppes’ in Turkish. The string quartet is treated as a homogenous unit rather than four separate entities, and at times, imagined as an oriental instrument. The first third of the piece explores several ideas derived from Turkish maqams and the folk tradition of bards’ songs, while presenting it in a manner where a constant shift of focus occurs back and forth between melodic and rhythmic structures. The second third of the piece depicts an imaginary journey from East to West through localities of texture. The final third of the piece concludes on an Anatolian folk song-like theme.

Performed by Mivos Quartet:

Olivia De Prato - Violin
Lauren Cauley - Violin
Victor Lowrie - Viola
Mariel Roberts - Cello

Recorded live on October 5, 2016 at Nelson Music Room in Durham, NC.


Ordinary Things (2016) 

for clarinet, bassoon, trumpet, trombone, percussion, violin, double bass and electronics

The design of this work is inspired by the rhythmic patterns and concealed musical structures in human speech.  Most aspects of the piece, such as rhythm, pitch and timbre, were generated through a series of computer analyses, examining the spectral formation of the Turkish President's voice. Temporal changes and formant transitions in the spectra are represented through various orchestral combinations (employing IRCAM's Orchids software) and digitally manipulated instrument samples in the electronics part. The recorded electronics serve as an extension of the live ensemble as well as replaying various excerpts and small fragments of the president's speeches, obscuring the meaning and emotional charge of the words. Ordinary Things does not aim to recreate the sound of human speech but highlights some of the micro-events in its frequency spectrum.

Performed by Deviant Septet:

Caleb Burhans - Violin
Doug Balliett - Double Bass
Bill Kalinkos - Clarinet
Brad Balliett - Bassoon
Mike Gurfield - Trumpet
Matthew Melore - Trombone
Jared Soldiviero - Percussion

Recorded live on March 11, 2016 at Baldwin Auditorium in Durham, NC.


Philae (2016)

for piano and electronics

In 2004, European Space Agency launched a space probe called Rosetta on a mission to land and perform a study of the comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. "Philae" was the name of its lander module. On 12 November 2014, “Philae” performed the first ever landing on a comet. Following the landing, which was a momentous event, the module got stuck in a ditch and all communications were cut off after a brief exchange of data. Months later there was a re-connection. “Philae” is still on the comet, studying data. This amazing human achievement inspired me to write a piece which marvels at the struggles, maneuvers and the loneliness of this little lander module.

Conrad Tao - piano

Recorded live on March 24, 2016 at Baldwin Auditorium in Durham, NC.


Devinim (2015)

for piccolo, bass clarinet, horn, electric guitar, viola and cello

Performed by yMusic ensemble:

Rob Moose - Electric Guitar
Nadia Sirota - Viola
Andrea Lee - Cello
Hideaki Aomori - Bass Clarinet
Alex Sopp - Piccolo
CJ Camerieri - Horn

Recorded live on March 3, 2015 at MOTORCO Music Hall in Durham, NC.