Several years ago, I wrote a blog series documenting the compositional process for my first concerto - a piece for double bass and chamber ensemble that was commissioned by Matthew Gibson, a then-current doctoral student at Michigan State University. This helped me be able to better articulate the ideas I had for the piece during this process, along with documenting how some of the decisions made during that process ultimately helped shape the work into what it eventually became. Furthermore, it was the first time I opened up more about my own compositional process for creating new music.
This blog series for Four Ethereal Planes will mostly follow a similar path to the one written for the double bass concerto. There will also be another similar blog series for my other concerto to be written this summer, a work for soprano saxophone and wind ensemble. With both of these series, I intend to delve further into the compositional process for these works and, in a way, discover how much this process has changed in the few years that passed since my last blog series. With every new commission and project, one of the most important goals I always strive to accomplish is to go a different direction in my compositional process from the last piece I've written. Both of these series will explore these approaches as well.
So, this first post serves as an introduction to the piece and some of my initial inspirations -