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PROGRAM NOTES by the composer

August Idyll for solo Flute


In 2005, I was distracted by many simultaneous "real life" challenges; I went over a year without focus or momentum for composing, even with an impending deadline for a piano concerto to be premiered in Carnegie Hall.

That summer's NFA convention was a great "reset," and a few weeks afterward I visited a friend out in the country surrounded by woods, wild animals wandering in the yard, bluebirds, and hummingbirds. On the first morning, I closed my eyes and a theme came into my head that I particularly liked. There was no music paper handy so I started scribbling on scrap paper. This surprise kept progressing and developing, and within a few hours I had "received" this reawakening gift of a completed new solo flute piece. It felt like merely taking dictation rather than composing.

Since I was in an idyllic setting (and the opening sounds somewhat like Grieg), and it was August, August Idyll seemed like a natural title for the piece.

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The innocent beauty of August Idyll, when I was navigating turmoil, exemplifies an ongoing element of my music - escapism. All my music without exception is about the beauty of music itself. Programs, commissions, texts, or other contexts can often inspire the writing of a piece or its specifics, but everything I write is ultimately a celebration of the beauty and my love of music. I am not good at creating ugly or angry, and I wouldn't want to be - who needs more of that?


last updated June 7, 2020