Two Movements for Leon
for Oboe, Tap Dancer, and Piano
Commissioned by Paige Morgan
for Paige Morgan and Ellen Walterscheid
I. "poetry of the body"
II. "poetry of the soul"
"Dancing is the poetry of the body as music is the poetry of the soul."
--Leon Collins (1922-1985)
Premiered January 2015 by Paige Morgan, oboe, Ellen Walterscheid, tapdancer, and Carolyn Grossmann, piano
The relationship between dance and music is one that has fascinated and inspired me from an early age. Legendary American tap dancer Leon Collins spoke of this relationship in a way that I believe beautifully captures the essence of both art forms: “Dance is the poetry of the body as music is the poetry of the soul. ” The two dances in this piece are inspired by Leon Collins’ legendary work, and were choreographed before the compositional process began. The music I wrote followed the inherent “music” that lies within the Collins’ inspired steps, in what I hope results in a musical experience that is unified and artistic.