This album began in a London flat 30 paces from the British Museum during 10 days of listening and singing together, reading aloud from M.R. James and Sterling North, poring over George Rochberg’s Slow Fires of Autumn, and climbing ancient hills in the chalk country surrounding the city.
Amid the cobbled streets and spires of London, Amy and Rama workshopped their collaborative skills and developed their friendship with a shared experience of England’s rich and textured culture during a compositional exchange program between the Blair School of Music and the Royal Academy of Music. Dr. Michael Alec Rose, a mentor to Amy and Rama through and beyond this project, spent happy hours walking them around his favorite haunts: the Globe Theatre, the sea stairs at Wapping, and the book market on the Thames’ south bank. Joining them was Peter Sheppard Skærved, a constant inspiration for this project, who like Dr. Rose, is a former student of the composer George Rochberg.
Upon returning to school, they continued preparing Slow Fires of Autumn for Amy’s senior recital. The project quickly expanded to this album culminating with Rochberg’s monumental work. In the lull between the end of classes and the beginning of Amy’s graduation festivities, they spent beautiful summer days on the strangely empty campus, rehearsing and recording.
Thanks to the Catalyst Grant from the Curb Center for Art, Enterprise & Public Policy and the generosity of the Friends of Flutes Foundation in New York City, Amy and Rama could finally “see it through” to this album’s launch, two years after London, on October 14, 2018.
In addition to the credited artists and production team members, we’d like to thank Mitch and Susan Thompson, Kumaran Ramanathan, and Uma Kumaran, our parents; Dr. Michael Slayton, Dr. Michael Alec Rose, Peter Sheppard Skærved, and Dr. Michael Gorton, our mentors in London; Mitchell Korn and Molly Barth, who offered invaluable advice and timely support; and Kimberly Kane, who made our album launch a reality.
Soli Deo Gloria