Mass Transit, my three-movement symphony orchestra work, debuted with two performances, May 7, 2011 in Idyllwild, CA & May 8 at The Redcat Theater in LA, which is the culmination of my Guggenheim Fellowship Project. To help me reach this deadline I was grateful to receive the MacDowell Colony Fellowship in 2010. I spent the end of 2010 working as hard as I could on this orchestral composition.
On March 25, 2011, the Youth Symphony of DuPage, conducted by Meng-Kong Tham, premiered my orchestral version of “Caress The Thought.” The bass soloist was Joseph Guastafeste. Joe Guastafeste recently retired, after 49 years from the Chicago Symphony as the Principal Double Bassist! This was a thrilling moment for me to hear my first full orchestra work performed and by one of my teachers! The evening was magnificent, the orchestra performed fantastically, and it will be always be a great memory. Joe not only performed my piece, but was featured on two other compositions by Chicago bassist, Larry Gray, who was also a student of Joe’s. I’m happy to say that Joe is only retiring from the CSO, but not from playing the bass, which he dearly loves. It was very inspiring to see him challenge himself and put all his years of experience and passion into the entire program.
February found me in Canada as a guest of The Winnipeg Jazz Orchestra, performing my big band compositions. They are a great band and we had a wonderful time.