Meditation by Abby Temple
In Meditation, I combined my own music and visual art into a three-movement song cycle. With the goal of depicting each period of the day, free improvisation on the trumpet is fused with improvised acrylic paintings, taking the audience through the solitary motions of everyday life.
In Morning, we see a sunrise barely peeking over a mountaintop and birds are wakening and chirping. The day has begun. Within Midday, the busyness of life creeps in. Stress fills the afternoon, yet there are slight pauses to think about what is actually happening. Immediately, we continue back into the hustle and bustle and productivity that midday brings. Night comes, and we settle into relaxation. We stare up at the deep night sky, count the stars, find constellations, and hear the snores of creatures falling asleep.
When we are truly by ourselves with our own thoughts, we see that the world is huge, beautiful, and we are so small within all of it. Join me by pausing and reflecting on the beauty of this one life we were given.
Cleo by Forbes Graham
for Soprano Voice and Trumpet (with Erin Henke, soprano)
This piece was inspired by a friend's cat named Cleo and features changing time signatures in almost every measure. Forbes Graham is a composer, musician, sound artist, and visual artist whose work explores themes of simultaneity, perceptibility, transformation and collage.
Jupiter Processional by Gustav Holst, arr. Curnow
for Trumpet and Organ (with Grant Holcomb, organist)
As winners of the University of Kentucky School of Music, Student Innovators: Community Outreach Grant, we were able to tour and present two recitals of trumpet and organ music in Lexington, KY and Prestonsburg, KY. This video showcases a glimpse of what the recitals looked like with incredible videography by William Arnold.
Hiraeth by Connor Johnson
for Unaccompanied Trumpet
Hiraeth is a Welsh word with no direct English translation. The closest approximation is along the lines of homesickness, longing, or yearning, but the longing expressed by hiraeth is for a home that you cannot return to, no longer exists, or maybe never was.
I commissioned this piece from Connor in 2020, and after I began practicing the piece I envisioned what hiraeth meant to me, a bittersweet connection to the Blue Ridge Mountains in North Carolina. This video includes a time-lapsed presentation of my own painting alongside the music.
The Swan by Camille Saint-Saëns
with Sunflowers by Vincent Van Gogh
for Flugelhorn and Piano (with Scott Koljonen, pianist)
I have imagined The Swan with Van Gogh sunflowers since I was in high school, probably because I discovered the two around the same time. I was also enlightened from watching Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova's rendition of this music, known as the dance called The Dying Swan. If you know anything about Van Gogh's life, you know it had a tragic ending. I imagine Van Gogh sitting at his windowsill, looking into a garden of sunflowers, listening to this music and contemplating the beauty of life with eventual death, just as Anna Pavlova depicts in her stunning choreography.
humans are stories of non-human things by Joel Kirk
for Trumpet Trio (with Hollyn Slykhuis & Nick Schleyer, trumpets)
When the apocalypse has come and the human race is no more, the world will be covered in a layer of detritus that will signify our time here. This layer will be primarily comprised of our waste; the things we have thrown away. Materials such as plastic, glass, concrete, and radiation will be all that survive us.
This piece aims to bring the ‘waste’ or ‘away’ sounds of the trumpet and its player into sharp focus. Breath noise, tongue-rams, valve-clicks, throat noise, and split tones caused by inconsistencies of the embouchure are the entire focus of this piece. These are all sounds
that are generally negated and ignored by the performer; ironed out by years of practice and good technique.
Reminiscent of a land-fill site, this piece is about trash; tons and tons of putrefied garbage processually and continually being tossed into a landfill site. The trash gets crushed under its own weight, gradually being boiled down to a rancid broth of carrion and carcasses.
Concertino by Eugene Bozza, excerpt from movement II
for Trumpet and Piano (with Caryl Conger, pianist)
This excerpt was taken from my performance of Eugene Bozza's Concertino in the Undergraduate Solo Division of the 2019 National Trumpet Competition, held at the University of Kentucky.