one of the most rewarding experiences of my time at MSM was this collaboration with New Zealand composer Salina Fisher on a brand new piece for solo piano. the piece is inventive, heartfelt, mysterious… a joy to perform. cozy up with a pair of headphones and take a listen!

"Uchi-Soto" (which literally translates to "inside-outside") refers to the differentiation between 'in-groups' and 'out-groups'; a concept that permeates Japanese society and language. Varying levels of politeness and respect are embedded in the language, reflecting the complex and changing layers of personal relationships between 'uchi (内)': typically family members and close friends, and 'soto (外)': strangers, customers, and also foreigners (外人). In reflecting on my own relationship with this concept (particularly in my identity as both Japanese and 'foreigner'), I became interested in finding a musical language in the layers 'in-between'; the subtle gradations of a single instrument's physical 'uchi' and 'soto'.

– Salina Fisher

each other (2015)
for any two wind instruments (as long as one has a lower register than the other), and optional bowed crotales

With this piece, I’ve attempted to recapture the intimacy of a particular moment. I was falling asleep with someone in the earliest hours of a Sunday morning – in the quiet of the room, all I could hear was the soft rising and falling of our breathing, a duet out of phase.

The sound of gentle, independent breathing, lightly amplified by the clarinets, forms a backdrop out of which wisps of a Bach invention surface and vanish. If Bach’s music, with its tight contrapuntal intercourse, might be likened to harmony between souls, I hope that my effacement of it evokes such a harmony in an even tenderer, fragile space: two lovers whispering, or dreaming of each other.

May 2015

First performance by members of 15.19ensemble (highSCORE Festival, Pavia, Italy; 8/2015; Soundcloud audio below)

Additional performances by:
Nicole Galisatus and Dalton Tran (UCLA, 11/2015; video below)
Wild Up (UCLA, 3/2016; as part of “Faded Songs”)

Learning Nancarrow’s Canon A (5/7)

  • 5 = 2+3; 7 = 2+2+3; think of each bar as a 3 against 2 but with one of the beats elongated.

  • Meter more about inflection than precision of duration.

Recent interests – discontinuity, pieces that sound like they are eternally beginning (Irving Fine on Martinu: “stringing together of introductions, never a consequent phrase”

memorable Cage moment:

in our edition of Atlas Eclipticalis, there was a system that ended with an entire quadrant of silence. conducting (i.e. moving my arm very slowly) through this long empty time felt like a bad dream – standing in front of a group of musicians not making any sound for 30 seconds while an audience watches your back? surreal.

Recent interests:

  • Kacey Musgraves, “Love is a Wild Thing”, “Happy and Sad”, “Space Cowboy”, “Rainbow”

  • Lucia Dlugoszewski

  • Charlie Sdraulig, “collector”

  • Kunsu Shim, “A Lasting Song for Geha”

  • Ariana Grande, thank u, next

  • Terry Riley, The Heaven Ladder, Book 5

  • Arthur Berger, Five Pieces

  • Robert Palmer, Sonata for Piano (Four Hands)

  • Stefan Wolpe, “Form” and “Form IV”

  • Brian Ferneyhough, “Lemma-Icon-Epigram”

    • in search of a sensible complexity…?