(2018) The musical material in A All is Always is derived from a recording of my own voice used in another piece of mine called All is Always——an inverted meditation of sorts. In both pieces, speech is the driving force behind the music. In that work, the text is audible and focal; an analysis of the speech drives synthetic music that casts the voice in an aura of itself. In A All is Always, I use the analysis of my voice to generate musical material that I sculpt and reconfigure into a piece for large chamber ensemble.
In this piece I’m interested in the idea of translation across media. I considered what it might mean to translate speech into a kind of absolute music that resists verbal communication. What, if anything, remains from my voice? Rhythm, generalized pitch contours? Or, in shaping the materials, have I completely eliminated all residue of the original, creating a contextless, quiet meditation with a life and world of its own? Symbols with their own histories, trajectories, and interactions.