Lawrence Dillon@Sequenza21.com

"There are no two points so distant from one another that they cannot be connected by a single straight line -- and an infinite number of curves."

Composer Lawrence Dillon has produced an extensive body of work, from brief solo pieces to a full-length opera. Three disks of his music are due out in 2010 on the Bridge, Albany and Naxos labels. In the past year, he has had commissions from the Emerson String Quartet, the Cassatt String Quartet, the Mansfield Symphony, the Boise Philharmonic, the Salt Lake City Symphony, the Ravinia Festival, the Daedalus String Quartet, the Kenan Institute for the Arts, the University of Utah and the Idyllwild Symphony Orchestra.

Although he lost 50% of his hearing in a childhood illness, Dillon began composing as soon as he started piano lessons at the age of seven. In 1985, he became the youngest composer to earn a doctorate at The Juilliard School, and was shortly thereafter appointed to the Juilliard faculty. Dillon is now Composer in Residence at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, where he has served as Music Director of the Contemporary Ensemble, Assistant Dean of Performance, and Interim Dean of the School of Music. He was the Featured American Composer in the February 2006 issue of Chamber Music magazine.


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Saturday, February 12, 2005
Revenant 2

On February 25th, I will conduct the premiere of my Revenant: Concerto for Horn and Orchestra with David Jolley as soloist. The compositional road for Revenant was pretty rocky: I started working on it about a year ago, finished it in November, then realized I hadnít written the piece I had wanted to write. What to do? I started over. So audiences at the premiere will actually be hearing my second horn concerto, although it wonít be billed as such.

Starting over is both painful and liberating. The painful part is having to ditch ideas you have become very close to. Russell Peck compares it to cutting off fingers. The liberating part is knowing exactly where things went wrong, and how to avoid the mishaps the second time around. I always find tasks easier the second time I do them, and this was no exception: the first version took seven months, the second just two weeks.

I will have more to say about Revenant, revisions, concertos and conducting in upcoming posts.

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