Our next Composer Spotlight for the upcoming Biennial 2020 NASA Conference features the music of MCI composer Harrison J. Collins. Last year, Collins composed a new work for saxophone ensemble that is inspired by the nighttime wonders of the cities he has lived in and visited. The composer writes the following program notes about Electric City:
"Electric City is, first and foremost, inspired by the colorful, glowing, metropolitan beauty of the big city at night. For me, this city is Dallas, Texas, a place that is quite close to my hometown and that I have seen and been to frequently. I am always in awe of both the visually pleasing colors of the night city as well as the powerful sense of vitality and life, and as I am frequently in Dallas to hear concerts performed by the Dallas Winds, I have grown to have a strong musical association with this night-life aesthetic. When Dr. Paul Nolen, the saxophone professor at Illinois State University, asked me to compose a work for the ISU Saxophone Studio, I had been particularly missing my home, and so I chose to act on my yearning and write Electric City as an ode to the beauty of Dallas at night.
Musically, the work is informed by both classical and non-classical music that I listen to, and particularly by one of my favorite songs, M83’s “Midnight City”. Inspired by the vividly descriptive lyrics of that song, Electric City can be heard as joyride through a big city that passes through sparkling lights and reflective skyscrapers in the dark of night, accelerating until a final gear shift sends us blazing into the darkness with the glow of the city behind us."
Electric City is now available to purchase through Murphy Music Press and will receive its world premiere during this year's NASA conference by the Illinois State University Saxophone Ensemble on Saturday, March 7th at 10:40am in Nelson Fine Arts Center Plaza. You can hear a preview audio realization of the piece below.
EVENT INFO: https://www.saxophonealliance.org/conference-presenters.asp?action=view&ProposalID=529
PIECE INFO: https://harrisonjcollins.squarespace.com/electric-city