"The Seven Deadly Sins and the Four Last Things" (c. 1500) by Hieronymus Bosch.
“The Seven Deadly Sins and the Four Last Things” (c. 1500) by Hieronymus Bosch.

Three years ago I asked seven Canadian composers to each write a solo flute piece inspired by one of the Seven Deadly Sins — the result is some of the most virtuosic, colourful, and evocative music I’ve ever played. The Seven Deadly Sins consists of pieces written by Dorothy Chang (Wrath), James Beckwith Maxwell (Envy), Jocelyn Morlock (Lust), Gregory Lee Newsome (Greed), T. Benton Roark (Sloth), Owen Underhill (Pride)… and me, doing my very best to channel Monty Python for my take on Gluttony. As of Monday I’ll be heading down to Pyatt Hall at the VSO School of Music (Vancouver) to begin recording all of them with one of Western Canada’s most cherished recording engineers, Don Harder. Along with the Sins, I’ll be recording a handful of solo flute Fantasias by the Baroque composer G. P. Telemann, creating a collection of — wait for it — “Sins and Fantasies.”

To give you an idea of the amazing music that has been entrusted to me, here is my live recording of Greg Newsome’s piece, Avarice, from a performance at the Music Gallery (Toronto) last March.

Taken from our big multi-flute extravaganza on May 23rd, here is the video of my performance of “Foundry” for solo flute by Canadian composer Paul Steenhuisen.

Written back in 1990, Steenhuisen says of the piece: “Prior to composing Foundry, I chose to approach the flute in its fundamental visual form, that of a metal pipe with holes in it. This idealistic objectivity opens up the possibility of using timbral colour to augment or contradict the relations of the more important pitch and rhythmic material. Within the framework of an evolving set of intervals, a limited number of gestures melt, fold, dissolve and blossom into each other using very simple methods in transit.”