“Miller is a master of planting a seed and setting in motion an entrancing process, then following through with the most sumptuous conviction.” – The Guardian, The best classical music classical music works of the 21st century, 2019
“The quality of the orchestral writing was astonishing, and the beautiful piece an unexpected highlight of the festival.” – TEMPO, 2015
Commissioned by Charles Curtis with the support of the Canada Council for the Arts
This concerto came together as an homage to the Sicilian opera composer Vincenzo Bellini, and attempts to reconcile the extraverted, romantic character of an orchestra with Charles Curtis’ introverted performance practice. Taking as its source material Trallallera, an Italian folksong performed by Maria Carta, I transcribed Carta’s performance with painstaking accuracy, to maintain her vibrancy and constant striving/soaring to the top of the phrase. Stripped of its context, I then harmonized the song, simply expanding it as a tip-of-the-hat to Bellini’s “long, long, long melodies.”
The piece is dedicated to the memory of Bob Gilmore, a man whose stories have lent meaning to our music-making. His work will continue to nourish our field for centuries to come.