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Doolittle - Sapling III. leafy green

from A Quinary by Vancouver Island Symphony

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Sapling for Violin and Orchestra – Emily Doolittle
Calvin Dyck, violin

Many of my pieces are inspired by sounds, imagery, or processes from the natural world. In the case of sapling, the musical ideas came first, and it is only after I had written the piece that I realized that it followed an organic process of development that made me think of the growth of a tree. The first movement begins with a persistent repeated note motive in the solo violin, which pushes its way upwards through a series of loud, percussive orchestra chords, before spreading outwards into a mist of overlapping, branching figures. The second movement, too, grows out of a repeated note, this time gentle and flexible, swaying and bending like a sapling in the wind. The third movement explores the various colours of the orchestra, as the sapling buds and bursts into leaf and flower. Sapling was commissioned by the Canada Council for the Arts for Calvin Dyck and the Vancouver Island Symphony in 2014.

Canadian-born, Scotland-based composer EMILY DOOLITTLE’S music has been described as “eloquent and effective” (The WholeNote), “masterful” (Musical Toronto), and “the piece...that grabbed me by the heart” (The WholeNote). Doolittle has been commissioned by such ensembles as Orchestre Métropolitain, Tafelmusik, Symphony Nova Scotia, the Paragon Ensemble, and Ensemble Contemporain de Montreal, and supported by the Sorel Organization, the Hinrichsen Foundation, Opera America, the Canada Council for the Arts, and the Fulbright Foundation, among others. Originally from Nova Scotia, Doolittle was educated at Dalhousie University, Indiana University, the Koninklijk Conservatorium, and Princeton University. From 2008–2015 she was on the faculty of Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle. She now lives in Glasgow, Scotland, where she is an Athenaeum Research Fellow at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. Her chamber music CD all spring, performed by the Seattle Chamber Players and friends was released on the Composers Concordance Label in 2015. www.emilydoolittle.com.

Raised in Mission on a Christmas tree farm, CALVIN DYCK was introduced to the accordion at the age of 5 by a travelling salesman, and started violin at the age of 8. In spite of a college aptitude test recommending a career as a tug boat captain, Calvin completed a music degree at Biola University, and went on to complete a Masters and Doctorate in violin performance at the University of Southern California with minors in choral conducting, music education and music history. Calvin has been concertmaster for the Vancouver Island Symphony since 2000. He is also the director for the Abbotsford Youth Orchestra, and is in demand as a producer, teacher, conductor and adjudicator. In 2012 Calvin was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal for service to the community. In April 2013 he was awarded an honorary Doctor of Humanities by Trinity Western University. www.calvindyck.com


from A Quinary, released March 14, 2020


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