for soprano, mezzo-soprano, tenor, and chamber orchestra; 10′ (1998)
poetry: Lawrence Ferlinghetti
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“Outside the Leaves Were Falling” was written as my undergraduate thesis project, and premiered by three student singers with members of the American Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Leon Botstein. In it, I honed my skills as a writer of art song, while playing with some wild orchestrational tricks, and trying desperately to make a symphony orchestra play Dixieland jazz. It was not always a successful piece, but it had its transcendent moments, and solidified my love for the power of voices and orchestra together, a love that would later blossom into my obsession with opera.