VIDA gets 7 performances at downtown Orlando’s Fringe Art Space, March 23-30

Vida is an immersive and captivating musical journey; this multidisciplinary, multilingual experience connects artistic expression and the complexities of navigating the different stages of life. It is a timeless, multi-generational invitation to look inward and explore one’s mental health and well-being in a lighthearted, poignant, and uplifting way. Through a mesmerizing blend of dance, visual arts, and literature encompassed within different vignettes, Vida extends beyond the realm of a standard performing arts production; it’s an experience that delves into the heart and psyche of humanity. Following each performance local artist, Ellen Pestili will lead audiences of all ages in a collaborative creative process which will give all open to participating an opportunity to connect, engage and imprint their emotions through art.


I composed roughly 18 minutes of music for cello quartet for this project, all played by the consummate cellist and Stetson faculty member Jamie Clark. She’ll play live over the other parts she pre-recorded.


Additionally, Vida features illustrations by Norwegian visual artist, Lisa Aisato and choreography and movement by recognized Cirque Du Soleil performer, Ana Cuellar.


An original production by Open Scene. 

Duration: 60-90 minutes. 

Suitable for audiences of all ages.

This project was conceived and produced by Thamara Bejarano and Mariella Saad, who run a fabulous local Spanish-language theatre organization called Open Scene. Their mission: Open Scene is a non-profit organization led by Latina women that serves as a cultural management agency whose mission is to promote multiculturalism, inclusion, and well-being. We present high-quality artistic and humanistic content that encourages pluralism and reduces the historical gap in access to the arts, whether due to cultural, language, or economic barriers. Our programs foster integration among people of all ages, providing platforms for meaningful civic dialogue, professional development, and cultural heritage preservation. By offering these programs, we aim to create spaces for people to grow well-being and enhance community cohesion.

VIDA gets 7 performances at downtown Orlando’s Fringe Art Space, March 23-30 Read More »

Between the Heaves of Storm premieres in Lousiana and Utah, March 15 & 18, 2024

Percussionist Gregory Lyons (Professor of Music and the James Alvey Smith Endowed Professor at Louisiana Tech University) and Multi-wind player Trevor Davis (Director of Woodwinds at at Southern Utah University) commissioned a brand new 8-minute work from me for their Delamo Duo.

Between the Heaves of Storm is written in three movements:
I. (Seductive, serpentine) scored for Alto Saxophone and Vibraphone;
II. (Moderate, with a rock swing/attitude) for Tenor Saxophone and Marimba; and
III. (Aggressive, ritualistic, dangerous) for Baritone Saxophone and mixed percussion/player’s choice

The premiere will be at Howard Auditorium (a 1,150-seat performance venue at Louisiana Tech University) this Friday, March 15 at 7PM. They’ll follow up that performance on Monday, March 18 at 7:30PM at Thorley Recital Hall on the campus of Southern Utah University.

Between the Heaves of Storm premieres in Lousiana and Utah, March 15 & 18, 2024 Read More »

Samba Variations at Stetson University, September 17 @ 3pm

Clarinetist Jessica Speak and guitarist Troy Gifford will reprise their premiere performance from last year of my Samba Variations, this time on September 17 at 3 p.m. at Stetson University’s Lee Chapel / Elizabeth Hall. This is part of a larger program of music that includes pianist Hannah Sun.

3:00 p.m., Lee Chapel, Elizabeth Hall
421 N. Woodland Blvd., DeLand, FL 32723
(386)-822-8950
Admission is free.

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Thresholds: Choral Doorways Into Hope, Loss and Spirit at Harriet’s Orlando Ballet on September 16

The 16-voice ensemble VoxO, directed by Claire Hodge and joined by pianist Libby Chippeaux, violinist Julia Gessinger, cellist Jamie Clark, and harpist Haley Rhodeside, presents a first-of-its-kind program ever heard in Orlando: regional or world premieres of choral works written entirely by living Central Florida composers.

The works in this program explore the depths of the emotional and spiritual human experience, from the Korean lullaby Jajang-ga by ChanJiKim to Alex Burtzos’s setting of Shakespeare’s Come Away, Death. New spiritual works set in Latin, like Brandon Martin’s Ave Maris Stella, Stan Cording’s Exaudi Me, and Alan Gerber’s Ubi Caritas, complement the secular deeply poetic expression found in works like Troy Gifford’s Like Water, Chaz Underriner’s Forget Sleep, and Charlie Griffin’s In After Time.

The singers of VoxO are:

Sopranos: Pam Armitage, Jenni Ayers, Brittany Payne, Stephanie Rosario

Altos: Ashley Duvé, Alice Fortunato, Jennifer Hunt, Corrie Shaw

Tenors: William Ayers, Michael Clossey, Larry Fortunato, Enrique Ynaty

Basses: Michael Andrew Creighton, Jason Ernst, Linden Gould, Andrew V Smith

Saturday, September 16 · 7pm EDT
Harriett’s Orlando Ballet Centre
600 North Lake Formosa Drive Orlando, FL 32803

Many, many thanks to The Awesome Foundation for their support of this project, along with Full Sail University, University of Central Florida, Valencia College, Track Shack, and Tom Dyer.

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who knows if the moon’s a balloon will receive a local premiere – VoxO at DPAC on September 9

Experience the adventurous spirit and wide-eyed wonder of childhood through music as Orlando Contemporary Chamber Orchestra partners with 16-voice sensation VoxO for “Through a Child’s Eyes.” This exciting concert features five world premieres that contemplate life’s joys and sorrows from a youthful perspective.

Let William Blake’s poetic ode “A Cradle Song” transport you to a place of innocence shielded from life’s harshness. Feel the liminal space between dreaming and waking in Ella Higginson’s mystical “Dawn.” Learn music’s magic alongside Robert Louis Stevenson’s whimsical verses. Marvel at the child-like visual poetry of e.e. cummings’ imaginary world where effortless love reigns in Charlie Griffin’s setting of who knows if the moon’s a balloon, rearranged specifically for VoxO at the request of their director, Claire Hodge. Grieve a child taken too soon yet find resilience in his spirit with Abby Henkel’s setting of Mary Craig’s elegiac “Perigee.” Dance with shorebirds on sandy shores through the playful lens of “Gymnopedie.” And wander in awe through a meadow’s symphony of shimmering lights. 

Under the direction of Todd Craven (OCCO) and Claire Hodge (VoxO), this imaginative program will be performed on September 9 at 8pm at the Alexis and Jim Pugh Theater of the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts. Experience choral music anew as “Through a Child’s Eyes” offers a kaleidoscope of perspectives, allowing you to reconnect to life’s beauty. 

who knows if the moon’s a balloon will receive a local premiere – VoxO at DPAC on September 9 Read More »

OCCO-Deconstructed: LANDSCAPES OF SHADOW AND LIGHT at Blue Bamboo Center for the Arts, August 19 at 8 pm

Blue Bamboo Center For The Arts — 1905 Kentucky Ave, Winter Park, FL. Saturday, August 19, 2023 @ 8PM. Tickets are $25.

Experience contemporary chamber music at its finest when Performing Arts Matter presents the Orlando Contemporary Chamber Orchestra and Central Florida Composer Forum in “OCCO Deconstructed: Landscapes of Shadow and Light.” Hear music by award-winning composers performed by small ensembles of OCCO’s outstanding musicians.

The program includes Alex Burtzos’ “King | Cawdor,” depicting the emotional turmoil of political power; Sharon Omens’ “Thoroughfare,” contrasting urban loneliness and natural connectedness; Troy Gifford’s energetic string quartet works “Lumina” and “Lacerta”; Dan Crozier’s haunting “Nocturne” for cello and piano; and Christian Yom’s “Sansori,” merging traditional Korean music and lush strings. The evening concludes with Charlie Griffin’s “Cambiando Paisajes,” a piano trio work inspired by Latin rhythms.

With passionate performances and thought-provoking new music, this evening of shadow and light is not to be missed. Experience contemporary music as it was meant to be heard – live on stage.

The performers for this event are:
Jamie Clark – Cello
Nora Lee Garcia – Flute
Julia Gessinger – Violin
Elliot May – Bass
Haley Rhodeside – Harp
Jazmin Skipper – Bassoon
Jessica Speak – Clarinet
Hannah Sun – Piano
Anabel Tejada – Viola
Andreas Volmer – Violin

OCCO-Deconstructed: LANDSCAPES OF SHADOW AND LIGHT at Blue Bamboo Center for the Arts, August 19 at 8 pm Read More »

Samba Variations

Duo for Clarinet and Guitar, 2022, ca. 7 minutes.

Sheet music is available for purchase at Sheet Music Plus

Clarinetists and guitarists seeking a sophisticated chamber work will delight in Charles Griffin’s Samba Variations. This lively 7-minute duo treats a traditional Brazilian samba theme to a series of brilliant variations ranging from toe-tapping minimalism to dream-like to sensual.

The samba theme appears in diverse guises, like a fashion show where the model sports different stunning costumes. Clarinetists will relish the opportunity to showcase technical flair and musicality through the work’s driving rhythms, syncopations, modulations, and range of articulations and dynamics.

Guitarists, too, are given plenty of chances to shine with jazz-inspired comping and improvisatory passages.

A superb selection for recitals or competitions, Samba Variations allows both instruments to fully demonstrate classical virtuosity and vibrant Brazilian spirit. Order your edition today for a dazzling showpiece duo!

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Orlando Contemporary Chamber Orchestra premieres Charlie Griffin’s Looking Up in Perfect Silence at the Stars at Harriett’s Orlando Ballet Centre – June 18, 2022

The Orlando Contemporary Chamber Orchestra launches its 2022 summer concert season in partnership with the Central Florida Composers Forum, (CF2) with each concert featuring a premiere by a local composer member of CF2. The first concert of the series is called To There From Here, and features my Looking Up in Perfect Silence at the Stars, an 18-minute work for 18-piece chamber orchestra, along with David Wilborn‘s Rhapsody for Bass Trombone and Chamber Orchestra (featuring the composer on bass trombone), and Kyle Throw‘s Myth and Dreams.

The concert will take place at Harriet’s Orlando Ballet Centre (600 N Lake Formosa Drive in Orlando) on June 18 at 7pm. Tickets are $25 and are available here.

Orlando Contemporary Chamber Orchestra premieres Charlie Griffin’s Looking Up in Perfect Silence at the Stars at Harriett’s Orlando Ballet Centre – June 18, 2022 Read More »

New Treble Choir 21V names Charlie Griffin for inaugural commission with April 1 & 2 premiere

From 21v’s Facebook page:

𝗦𝗔𝗩𝗘 𝗧𝗛𝗘 𝗗𝗔𝗧𝗘! After many months of planning and preparation, we are beyond excited to be announcing 21V’s inaugural program, 𝘽𝙚𝙮𝙤𝙣𝙙 𝘽𝙞𝙣𝙖𝙧𝙮, 𝗼𝗻 𝗔𝗽𝗿𝗶𝗹 𝟭, 𝟮𝟬𝟮𝟮 at the San Francisco War Memorial & Performing Arts Center and 𝗔𝗽𝗿𝗶𝗹 𝟮, 𝟮𝟬𝟮𝟮 at the African American Museum & Library in Oakland. These performances explore and challenge the myth of “us vs. them”, and will feature the world premiere of 21V’s first commission, “Praise Song for Tulsa.” 

Sign up for 21V’s e-newsletter and get an insider view of their inaugural program!

Praise Song for Tulsa is a newly-composed work for the voices of 21V and audio that includes improvisation, solos, and a speaking Pastoral role, with text by my poet friend and Orisha Priest, Christina Springer.  

New Treble Choir 21V names Charlie Griffin for inaugural commission with April 1 & 2 premiere Read More »

Will Daniels premieres Phase Variations at Timucua Arts Foundation in back-to-back October 1, 2021 concerts

PRELUDES AND SERENADES — New Music for Piano 

Friday, October 1, 2021 – Timucua Arts Foundation
2000 South Summerlin, Orlando, FL 32806.
at 7:00 PM and 8:30 PM
Tickets $20/$10 students, veterans, Timucua & CFCF members

Pianists Will Daniels, Rose Grace, and Barry Snyder perform a striking and stimulating program of new music by local composers.
Join us for the Central Florida Composers’ Forum’s fall concert, which will present new music for piano by local composers. Pianists Will Daniels, Rose Grace, and Barry Snyder perform a striking and stimulating program of music by ChanJi Kim, Keith Lay, Troy Gifford, Stan Cording, Charlie Griffin, Jamie Wehr, Erik Branch, and Alex Burtzos.

There are two performances of this program, one at 7 PM and one at 8:30 PM.

Tickets available at:
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/preludes-and-serenades-new-music-for-piano-in-person-tickets-166806656199 (to attend in person)

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/preludes-and-serenades-new-music-for-piano-live-stream-tickets-169003145959 (for the livestream)

Phase Variations is a five-movement set of variations for solo piano that uses as its theme Steve Reich’s classic and seminal 1967 minimalist masterpiece for two pianos, Piano Phase. This was Reich’s experiment with replicating a bug/feature of tape recorders whereby slight differences in the play speed mechanisms between two machines would incrementally create phasing between them over time. The germinal material of Reich’s Piano Phase is a stark twelve-note motive that, in the original, is played in unison rhythm by two pianists that are then asked to phase apart just like two tape recorders would do. This is “process” music at its finest. 

In Phase Variations, the Reich theme emerges by the end of the first variation. Each subsequent variation dresses the theme in different ways, as variations do, and ends with a process-derived variation of my own. The finale, which follows the fourth variation without break, is a toccata whose rhythmic patterning is based on the famous Fibonacci sequence. This is a growth pattern seen in nature based on a series in which each number is the sum of the previous two numbers.


Will Daniels premieres Phase Variations at Timucua Arts Foundation in back-to-back October 1, 2021 concerts Read More »