"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.

Visit Lawrence Dillon's Web Site

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Thursday, February 14, 2008
A Day in the Life of an Idea

Yesterday morning I was driving to work when I got an idea for an avenue to pursue in the piece I’m working on. I whipped out my cell phone, tooling down the highway (legal here), and called my office, leaving a message on my voicemail.

“hello Lawrence, this is Lawrence…you know that passage that begins with the bassoon solo?...”

When I got to my office fifteen minutes later, I checked my messages, and found the idea, which I had already forgotten (which gives you some sense of what a haunted house my mind is – I lose ideas in these drafty corridors all the time), and I swiftly scribbled it down on a pad of paper.

Then I emailed myself, describing what I had written down in front of me.

When I got home last night, I checked my email, and there was the idea, fresh as the jangled angles of the morning sunlight. I began threading it into the piece I’ve been working on.

The 12-hour journey that idea took – car to phone to voicemail to notepad to email to score -- I couldn’t have conceived of such a thing twenty years ago. I wonder how archaic it will seem in another twenty years.