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I Am Phoenix

Performed by Aimée C. Martineau (voice I), Hannah Freeman (voice II) and Shawn Roah (guitar)

Instrumentation: Two female voices and guitar

Duration: ca. 9 minutes

Movements:
I. The Wandering Albatross
II. The Actor
III. The Common Egret
IV. The Phoenix

Text: Four poems from I Am Phoenix by Paul Fleischman

Year composed: 2006

Place composed: Fullerton, CA

Dedication: This work is dedicated to Paul Fleischman, with deep gratitude for trusting a young composer, and for allowing me to realize my childhood dream of setting these magnificent poems to music.

Program Notes: Described by William Vollinger as “uniquely lovely” and “evocative,” I Am Phoenix is a song cycle for two female voices and guitar. The text is from a book of poems for two voices (also called I Am Phoenix) by California author Paul Fleischman. They are intended to be read aloud by two performers, and the text lends itself easily to a musical setting. AJ first discovered these poems during a music camp in Colorado Springs, CO when he was about 11 years old, and had wanted to set them to music ever since. During his studies at Cal State Fullerton, one of his composition teachers suggested he compose a short song cycle using an accompanying instrument other than piano, and he took the opportunity to compose a piece based on these poems.