Ledgers and Gems

When I first published this website, I glanced over the pages and thought that the list of compositions looked like a ledger. Just a long, dry list of items, carefully accounted for, but not too exciting. I should not have been surprised: that was the original plan. This website was to be a simple record of the works we have supported. It would document the works, and provide a reference for those interested in these talented composers and performers.

But then, something magical happened. As my eye paused on a single line – a single composition – memories of the music, and the composer, and the players at the premiere formed in my mind. As I looked further, it happened again. Sometimes those memories unfolded slowly. Sometimes, they appeared abruptly and vividly. Frequently, the memories evoked strong emotions, nearly all of joy or amazement.

Every one of the pieces that we have supported has a story. Some of these stories are simple, short, and unadorned. But some are epic adventures spanning years and featuring a fascinating cast of characters.

Some projects started with one composer, and ended with another. Some projects morphed over time, with new performers, a new venue, and even a new concept, so that when they appeared, they bore no resemblance to what they were originally supposed to be. Sometimes, a project would lead to the creation of another commission, even better than the first.

What is now clear is that as helpful the ledger-with-links might be for the curious (or even for musicologists), this adventure deserves more than a simple accounting. While the music is king – the whole reason this website exists – the human side of the stories hidden within that ledger deserve telling as well. So in addition to the ledger, we will endeavor to tell some not too tall tales about our adventures.