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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Monday, July 09, 2007
Festival

Since 1999, Iíve been spending the bulk of my summers out on the Outer Banks, an amazing stretch of coastline with deserted National Seashore about five hours drive from here. Iíve had varying roles in a summer arts festival there over the years, from overseeing the afternoon chamber programs to coordinating all of about a hundred performances of music, dance, drama and film. In the last two summers, Iíve reported on this blog about our activities, especially as they relate to new music.

After eight summers, though, I decided I had had enough, and perhaps the festival had had enough of me as well, so I stepped down to spend more time on composing. Their new season is in its third week now, and Iíve been staying home working on the thing Iíd really much rather do: writing music. Itís been a great relief to be able to focus inward more than I have in many summers. Iíll be taking a quick trip out to the festival in a couple of weeks, but just as a spectator.

When Iím there, if anyone asks me any questions about housing, rehearsal schedule, repertoire, driving directions, Xeroxing, lighting, sound, weather, ticket prices, etc. Iíll just smile and shrug my shoulders. Iím just there to listen to the waves and gaze at the amazing array of birds and beach life.