Music

Doolittle: Minute Études “Excerpts” (Live)

Released: August 16, 2019

Doolittle: Minute Études “Excerpts” (Live) features excerpts from a series of piano pieces by composer Emily Doolittle. Each piece explores one idea, whether it’s an interval, a rhythmic pattern, or an effect.

O Mistress Moon

Released: July 20, 2018

O Mistress Moon is a collection of two centuries of Nocturnes and night inspired music from composers Chopin, Britten, Satie, Debussy, Barber, Poulenc, Schumann, Scriabin, Respighi, and Juno award winning composer Derek Charke. The music promises to transport you to the moon and back on a peaceful, thought-provoking journey.

O Mistress Moon: Canadian Edition

“In the Falling Dark 1” by Derek Charke

February 12, 2021

Snow Moon/ Snow Blinding (Folkloric/Mi’kmaq)

Composed by Derek Charke in 2014 as a commission by the Muzikon series for pianist Barbara Pritchard. The work is about the time of day known as dusk or twilight. In French this hour is known as ‘Entre Chien et Loup’ (translated as between dog and wolf). The mood begins from a recurring chorale to shimmering, repeated chord patterns opening to brooding moments and spaciously improvised solemn reflections.

“Nocturne Op 97” by Richard Gibson

March 26, 2021

Worm Moon/ Maple Sugar (Folkloric/Mi’kmaq)

As would be expected from the title, I have tried through this piece to create music evocative of nocturnal mystery, introspection and the revelation of hidden meaning, in the same manner that the obscurity of nightfall can be conducive to personal introspection. Within a restrained registral compass, and against a background of mysteriously ambiguous inner-voice chords, certain anchor tones gain prominence through the progress of the piece, ultimately revealing the hidden structural ‘meaning’ in the form of the 12-note chord which concludes the piece. Of course, the compositional point of departure was simply to create a succession of beautiful sounds, in this case for Janet Hammock, a pianist and friend of long duration to whom the nocturne is dedicated. The revelation of a hidden meaning was a serendipitous by-product, dictated to me by the music, during a period of intensely focused composition.

"Nocturne E. 93" by Sophie-Carmen Eckhardt-Gramatté

April 23, 2021

Pink Moon/Birds Laying Eggs
(Folkloric/Mi’kmaq)

Sophie-Carmen Eckhardt-Gramatté was a mostly self taught, Russian-born Canadian composer. She also was a virtuoso pianist and violinist. This Nocturne is a childhood piece she wrote around the age of 13 and then later returned to revise and expand as an adult in 1936 while living in Berlin. There are influences of Chopin and Schumann but this is clearly the work of an expressive and independently minded artist.

"Nocturne No 1" by Sandy Moore

May 28, 2021

Flower Moon/Frogs Croaking (Folkloric/Mi'kmaq)

Sandy Moores’ Three Nocturnes were written in 1974 while he and Linda were awaiting the birth of their first child. Moore writes: My training at Mt. Allison University was rigorously classical, both in piano performance and composition. Chopin lifted me, both lyrically and mentally, from mechanized profoundness, and I bonded with his music through life's emotional landscapes. Each of my Nocturnes is episodic and although inherently classical in style, they have the temperament of shifting thematic and variation statements, underscored by murmurs of calm and agitation.

No. 1 is more reminiscent of Erik Satie's Nocturnes and is lyrical and meditative. 

"Nocturne No 2" by Sandy Moore

June 25, 2021

Strawberry Moon/ Fully Leafed Trees (Folkloric/Mi'kmaq)

Sandy Moores’ Three Nocturnes were written in 1974 while he and Linda were awaiting the birth of their first child. Moore writes: My training at Mt. Allison University was rigorously classical, both in piano performance and composition. Chopin lifted me, both lyrically and mentally, from mechanized profoundness, and I bonded with his music through life's emotional landscapes. Each of my Nocturnes is episodic and although inherently classical in style, they have the temperament of shifting thematic and variation statements, underscored by murmurs of calm and agitation.

No. 2 The composer describes it as a “broody” slice of life in the vein of a nighttime fantasy.

"Gliese 581c " by Emily Doolittle

July 23, 2021

Buck Moon/ Birds Shedding Feathers (Folkloric/Mi'kmaq)

Doolittle wrote this work for long-time friend and collaborator, pianist Rachel Kiyo Iwaasa in 2008. Gliese 581c was discovered in 2007, and is classified as a super-Earth planet. At first it was thought it may be habitable but it is now considered to be unlikely as it is tidally locked. A message from Earth was sent in 2008 with 501 messages and is expected to arrive in early 2029. This piece imagines us looking at the planet from space, watching it turn, and projecting our wonder, imagination, and hopes onto it.