Meristem for 15 String Instruments (2022)
Instrumentation: Strings: 184.108.40.206.1.
Commissioned by the Hastings Philharmonic Orchestra
Premiered by Marcio Da Silva and the Hastings Philharmonic Orchestra during HPO on the Road Tour (2022)
One of my favorite things to do outside of the world of music is gardening, and I’ve always found it comforting and oddly inspiring to see that my plants continue to grow and climb even during the times when I’m fully focused on finishing a piece. I find it to be a wonderful physical manifestation of the passage and unpredictability of time.
When Marcio da Silva asked me to write this piece back in 2019, I had no idea just how unpredictable things would soon become. Since then, I have moved to Chicago to begin my doctoral studies. My life, and, of course, the entire world is completely different now.
My piece Meristem, which gets its title from the tissue that is responsible for new growth on plants, begins with fragmented musical material – extremely short notes that are played by a single performer – that, over the course of the opening, gradually begins to emerge in more instruments. These seeds grow into longer and longer notes, until they begin to pull apart and branch out into larger textural and harmonic landscapes.
This recording is from the performance by the Hastings Philharmonic Orchestra and Marcio da Silva which took place on June 24, 2022 at The Assumption of Blessed Mary and St Nicholas, Etchingham, England.