"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, November 06, 2008
Step Back and Dream

Couldn’t be more thrilled about the outcome of Tuesday’s election, from so many fronts. But I think it’s worth taking a moment to honor this flawed but astonishing political system by recognizing what a different world we’d be living in if John McCain had managed to win his party’s endorsement in 2000.

First of all, based on his less-than-fully-effective campaigning in 2008, we could have been looking at a Gore White House, which would have been night-and-day from what we’ve known.

But even if McCain had won it all eight years ago, how different things would be now!

• Saddam Hussein would still be an annoying, but contained, thorn in the US’s side.
• We wouldn’t have poured billions of dollars and thousands of lost lives into Iraq.
• We would have continued taking part in the Kyoto Protocol.
• There would have been no national denial of global warming.
• Our government wouldn’t have become such an international embarrassment, in addition to being a international threat.
• We wouldn’t have seen the intense suppression of criticism of the executive branch that overtook this nation from 2002-2005.

I can’t say we would have avoided the current economic collapse, because I don’t really believe that’s true – but it might have been a bit less catastrophic.

I don’t say any of this to prove that McCain is such a great guy, but rather that Bush and Cheney were a truly toxic combination. I think McCain is better suited to being a senator than a president -- and I think he’s just above average as a senator -- but even he would have been an enormous improvement over what we’ve had these last eight years.