Blooming (2015)

for orchestra.  dur: 8'

instrumentation:  2(+picc).2(+corA).2.2-4.3.3(3=btb).1-timp+2perc.-hp.cel.-str.   

Program NotesBlooming was inspired by a particular scene I encountered during the summer of 2014.  I was living in Berlin, studying composition for five weeks with Samuel Adler at the Freie Universität.  My lessons were early in the morning, and when they were finished I would walk leisurely back to my host family's idyllic house in the quiet neighborhood of Schöneberg.  Along this walk was a magnificent gated red brick school building with a large schoolyard in front.  One morning I saw what looked to be an entire class of children running soccer drills in the yard, presumably for fitness class. They must have been between 11 and 13 years of age, just on the verge of puberty, and as I looked at them, I was transported back to my own memories of that stage of life.  Perhaps nothing is felt so powerfully as it is in early adolescence, when the body is flooded with new and unfamiliar feelings, mechanisms, hormones and neurotransmitters.  It occurred to me that there can also be a feeling of shame about some of these changes.  There is a certain innocence of childhood that has been lost, and will never be regained-- yet at the same time, a beautiful new and different innocence to experiencing powerful adult emotions so purely for the first time.  I decided I wanted to write a piece that would attempt to encapsulate this visceral yet sweet mix of feelings.  I chose the title "Blooming" to describe this process of maturing into the first blossoms of adulthood.