On the horizon – Pirates! (a 2009 J.W.Pepper’s Editor’s Choice) and Irish Jig for Young Feet will be available this summer from FJH Music. Irish Jig for Young Feet is a delightful little 6/8 jig with some call and response between the percussionists and the winds players (and their feet!). My thanks goes out to Tad Greig who was the first colleague to really give this suite (Pirates!) a boost of confidence when his wind ensemble did a recording for me (BTW – his Wind Ensemble played at the 2009 PMEA State Conference and they were ridiculously good!). A second thank you to Brian Balmages – Brian really challenged me to develop the second movement beyond what I originally wrote. He asked me great questions during the revisions, and I am really proud of what I created in the second movement. A final thank you to Drew Fennell – Drew has handled several of my pieces now with some honor bands and the RCYBB. He has been a good friend and supporter of the suite. I started writing Pirates in 2006 – for it to finally find a home and get published for me personally is really special.
Speaking of Drew – the RCYBB will present “A Frontire…er… I wish Finale had a spell checker. The RCYBB got a huge chuckle as did I on the spelling error on the parts. At any rate, “A Frontier Fought and A City Found” will debut later this month. I cannot wait! I got to know several of the students in the group this year and I know they will do an awesome job especially under Drew’s direction.
I am still in a little bit of shock – I found out that “Journey to the Prairie” received third prize in the young band division of the 2nd Annual Frank Ticheli Composition Contest. I took time to listen to some of the other winners – great stuff to be sure! I was especially taken with Joni Green’s “Moonscape Awakening”. My thanks to Dr. Edwin P. Arnold and the Grove City College Wind Ensemble for making the recording that I sent in with the submission. I always believe in what I write, but was just hoping for some more feedback from a different set of ears. It is a thrill beyond words, and quite an honor to be included alongside so many other composers.