"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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Friday, January 09, 2009

On Monday evening, violinist Danielle Belen will perform my Façade on her Carnegie Hall debut. Danielle was the 2008 Grand Prize Winner in the annual Sphinx competition, which helps promote young Black and Latino musicians. As part of her prize, she’s played concertos last season and this with an amazing list of top orchestras: the Pittsburgh Symphony, Boston Pops, Atlanta Symphony, Florida Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, Berkeley Symphony Orchestra, Naples Philharmonic, Cleveland Orchestra, Colorado Symphony and the Nashville Symphony.

She’s also playing this Carnegie debut, and she’ll be releasing a disk of violin works by yours truly on the Naxos label.

Danielle first got in touch with me last August, explaining that Sphinx and Naxos wanted her to record a complete disk of works by a single American composer of her choice. Having listened to a bunch of new music online, she narrowed her options down to a lucky few, then contacted the composers to find out if they had enough solo violin music for a complete disk. I guess I came closest to fulfilling the required parameters, because she had decided on recording my music by the end of September.

She seems to be particularly taken by Façade, which is a nice coincidence, since it was composed the year she was born. (Façade was a student piece; I’ve blogged about it here) Unfortunately, I can’t be there for the Carnegie gig (too many other things going on around here this week), but she’ll be playing a complete recital of my works at the Colburn School in LA on February 1st, after which we’ll convene in Toronto (brrrr) for four days of recording sessions.

Thanks for investing so much of your time and effort in my music, Danielle! Hope your Carnegie show is a big success.