About this piece:
In early 2011, the Northwest Missouri State University performed a joint concert with the Platte City Community band down in Platte City, MO. I was absolutely blown away by the talent of this group and all the potential they had! After the concert I began discussions with their director, Mr. Alfred Sergel III, who was the former director of bands at Northwest. We discussed the possibility of me writing a piece for them to premier in October 2011. Originally the work was to be a one movement work that I titled “Discovery”. I began composing the piece and quickly realized I had way too much material for one piece alone. And after a long night of thinking of what material to cut and what to do with it all, I made my decision. I was to write my second symphony.
I was very hesitant about this because the first I wrote (The Great Machine) had never truly been ever finished because the midi files it was contained in were corrupted on an old hard drive and I had yet to find a data expert capable of restoring them (but this story is for another day). So with hesitation I began sat down to figure out how I would exactly write the symphony. How many movements? What was it going to be called? What was my inspiration?
The answer to the questions came surprising from NASA. I had stumbled onto an article at work (on my lunch break of course) about a space probe that NASA had launched in 2006 called “New Horizons”. This probe was being sent to the distant planet Pluto (who as of 2006 was still a planet before it was reclassified as a dwarf planet). NASA had always inspired me as a kid so I knew immediately what the inspiration would be thus I decided to call the symphony “New Horizons”. I also wanted each movement to be able to act independently of its own but still work together when they were put together for the entire work.
I wrote the entire first movement during my internship at Cerner in Kansas City, MO. Towards the end of that summer I was approached by my highschool band director about writing a piece for their band. I quickly agreed and decided on writing the second movement for them. And in October of 2011, Mvt. I – “Discovery” was premiered by the Platte City Community Band. Mvt. II – “New Horizons” was premiered with a revised version of the first movement by the Bellevue West Wind Ensemble. In mid spring 2012, I was commissioned to finish writing the third movement of the symphony. This movement will be available in Fall 2012.