for brass quintet (in progress)

Aedificare: Duration: approx. 5’15”

Program Notes:

Building Cathedrals is a three-movement work for brass quintet. In reflecting upon my musical studies over the past 22 years, the concept of cathedrals arose more frequently than I had ever noticed before. In my studies, I pored over the scores of Debussy’s The Sunken Cathedral and Jennifer Higdon’s Blue Cathedral. I performed in several cathedrals when on tours with various collegiate choirs. In September 2015, the Hamilton album dropped, and the lyrics referenced Hamilton’s use of words like he “built cathedrals.” I was raised in a Christian faith, so churches have always felt home to me, and I had seen several large cathedrals in Europe over years of travel, so they should have been nothing new to me. However, it wasn’t until I moved to a city where there was an abundance of these buildings to pass every day that I finally started studying the architecture. The time and skill that went into creating such masterpieces astounds me, and reflecting on the process greatly reminds me of the analogy of how I try to live my spiritual and compositional life.

The first movement, Aedificare, represents the work needed to complete a task. It builds from a solid vision, but the construction becomes unsteady as each instrument role works to find its place amid the structure. The second movement, Quies, represents the necessary rest after the work is completed. The third and final movement, Laudate, represents the joy and gratitude in appreciating the work that was accomplished. Working hard, taking time to rest afterward, and rejoicing in the good in life are three valuable lessons I learned in the shadow of studying cathedrals.


Score and parts for Aedificare available through the contact page. Scores and parts for the full piece will be made available as they are completed.