Ian Richter and Hanna Van Rooijen commissioned this theatrical chamber piece for soprano and solo alto saxophone. It tells the story of Guillaume de Machaut writing his rondeau, Rose liz, in the year 1350. We get to see Machaut trying and failing to compose, suffering nightmares about the black death he just lived through, and trying to do his day job as a priest while being distracted by the music he’d much rather be writing.
It was awesome to write this piece for Ian, Hanna, and the other consortium members who are performing the piece in its first year. The chance to develop characterization and experiment with a theatrical piece in this way in so short a time is awesome.