Lights Out! (1999)
for Solo Cello
Duration: 5 min
Premiere: Stephen Elisha, cello - March 23, 2000; Kansas City, MO
Program Note: Writing a solo piece presents the composer with particular challenges. At first, only one instrument to work with seems limiting and, honestly, a little scary. Both performer and composer are exposed and vulnerable. Then, the tendency becomes to write extremely difficult music to play, in a way, trying to make up for the lack of additional sound sources. As I was getting further into the planning stages of “Lights Out!” I realized that this vulnerability is exactly what I wanted the piece to be about. Employing the richest register of the cello with playful and introspective motives, the performer and composer meet out in the open, lights out, unmasked and without pretense.