“ Interestingly, the work that tried to please the least was the most compelling. Hayes Biggs’ piece Ave Formosissima harkens back to the dance-mad, melismatic and slightly raucous music of the Middle Ages. But the score, with its zig-zagging lines and pungent dissonances, is genuinely contemporary.”—New York Times
“ A Consuming Fire, a short, zesty trio by Hayes Biggs, led off the evening. The piece is framed by some engagingly angular rhythmic writing, with a lyrical nougat at the center.”—San Francisco Chronicle
“ [The] most convincing and coherent performance [was] Hayes Biggs’ homage to his composer/pianist colleague Eric Moe, E.M. am Flügel, a short piece with romantic gestures and echoes of Berg and Stravinsky.”—Aufbau
“ The Mass for All Saints would be an exciting challenge for those choirs skilled in precise intonation and rhythmic agility. Biggs writes with knowledge of and respect for the expressive capabilities of the human voice.”—Choral Journal
“ Hayes Biggs’s wedding motet Tota Pulchra Es, here being sung for the first time, impressed by its quiet solemnity and neat working of its expressive opening motif: not empty fanfares but a reminder of the seriousness and privacy of love.”—New York Times
“ Mass for All Saints by composer Hayes Biggs releases shadows transformed into tendrils of light by the arabesque of the vocal line. Contrapuntal procedures are used to their utmost expressive effect. [It] is a work of a melodist of talent in the manner of Puccini, or better yet, Respighi.”—La Liberté
“ The Biggs song, Northeast Reservation Lines, is a real party piece... the sneakiness of the changes, the liveliness of the music and the verve of the performance worked handily... a potential recital hit in the vein of Bernstein’s I Hate Music cycle.”—The Village Voice
“ All the works tried a return to tonality typical of the decade; the most successful made the return oblique and ambiguous. Hayes Biggs’ O Sacrum Convivium took off from the motet of Tallis, yet it handsomely reconfigured early modes in a modernistic scheme of free tonality.”—New York Times
“ Hayes Biggs’ To Becalme His Fever... is a vivid evocation of anxiety, fits and repose. The language embraces pointillistic colors, romantic lines and prickly episodes when the demons hover. Biggs claims a forceful and subtle dramatic hand, along with a keen command of instrumental resources.”—The Plain Dealer
First of all this is to wish you all the best of this Holiday season and all good things in 2023.
Second, I have two exciting performances of my music lined up for this spring.
1) C4: The Choral Composer/Conductor Collective will premiere my motet O Oriens/Wie schön leuchtet der Morgenstern (2021) in mid-March Stay tuned for exact details.
2) I am presenting a recital of my chamber music at Merkin Concert Hall on May 31, 2023 at 7:30 pm. It will include the premiere of my Reveries. Passions. (Fantasy-Quartet for Piano and Strings) (2020) as well performances of Inquieto (attraverso il rumore) (2015) for violin and piano and four piano preludes (2015-2022). The excellent musicians are Curtis Macomber, violin; Lois Martin, viola; Chris Gross, violoncello, and Christopher Oldfather, piano.
I look forward to seeing many of you at one or both of these events!
Happy New Year to you all!
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Congratulations and good luck for your premieres. I send you my very best wishes for the New Year.
Thanks, Sam, I hope you and Emily are well and wish you both the best for 2023.
And thanks also, Sam, for this year’s round. I look forward to it every year!
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