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Commissioned by Palisades Virtuosi and recorded on the CD, Vol.6

Dog Tales (2014)

  • When Palisades Virtuos commissioned me to compose a work for their November 2014 concerti, I was told that the theme of the concert was "Music Borne out of Adversity". Another holocaust piece, I thought? Or maybe something to do with Ebola? Oh no. Too depressing. How was I to know that, at that exact time, my rescue dog, Dodger, would run away from a friend's home miles from where we live. Frightened and trying to find his way back home, he ended up even further away. Good fotune smiled down upon us! A kind and generous dog lover found him and held him in his car until we made our way to pick up this tired animal who was totally dehydrated and exhausted from running miles to who-knows-where. Those who know Los Angeles and the enormous distances between places and the number of cars know that this little creature had to cross many four-to-six lane boulevards and streets before his little legs could carry him no further. As Tennessee Williams said "the kindness of strangers" was, in this case, what saved my precious dog. To the homeless lady who held him, to my friend who drove me to him, and to the man who kept him safe in his car, I forever thank them, wherever they are. The three movements are titled: 1. Three Dog Night - Each movement of "Dog Tales" has a story. The first movement, "Three Dog Night" refers to my dog-sitting for neighbors who have two dogs and go away frequently on long trips. One can only imagine what ensues during those long nights at my house trying to take care of three dogs. Hence, the irregular time signatures and the overlapping motifs. 2. The Artful Dodger - The second movement, "The Artful Dodger" is a tone poem to my dear dog who "artfully" managed to "dodge" the traffic and possible horrible outcomes on his journey. 3. Mutt & Jeff - The last movement, "Mutt & Steff", is a short and, I think, humorous homage to a chihuahua (think small dog=piccolo) and a great dane (bass clarinet) who try to figure out how to get along and live together.
  • flute/piccolo, clarinet/bass clar, piano
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