Author Archives: Dan Visconti

Opportunities for Composing Operas

By Dan Visconti
The framework for more outside-of-academia, on-the-job training already exists but is underfunded and modest in scope; on the other hand, many elements of a rationally-planned network for new opera development don’t even exist in skeletal form.

Gestation

By Dan Visconti
I want to provide myself with a nutritious diet during this time, almost as a mother carrying a child must feel; carrying and nourishing a precious entity seems as close to any description of composing as I’ve ever encountered.

It Came from the Pit!

By Dan Visconti
While useful orchestration texts abound, I have always been surprised that I have never come across any devoted to the specific challenge of composing for pit groups.

Four-Way Split

By Dan Visconti
Despite huge variations in budget, both chamber ensembles and orchestra of all stripes operate under vastly more uniform templates than the spread of most American opera companies.

Highway Hypnosis

By Dan Visconti
When the “lights are on” in our sense of self, it’s easy to discern between inner thoughts and the physical world outside; similarly, after dark our awareness of the outside world dims, replaced by the reflection of our own mental lights on the window panes of perception.

Long Distance Runaround

By Dan Visconti
Technology has in many ways opened up opportunities and collaborations that would not have been otherwise available.

Back-stories

By Dan Visconti
Plays, opera, and the like tend to take place in a matter of hours, not years; we can’t spend every day with these characters to figure out what drives them, so that which drives them must be amply apparent in the scads of nearly “insignificant” details of body language, pacing, and vocal emphasis.

Absence

By Dan Visconti
While I’d like to attend all the performances of my music, this is no longer even physically possible—so different from beginning student days, where every musical interaction, performance, and rehearsal took place under the auspices of the same mother institution.

Composer and Employee

By Dan Visconti
I don’t currently have any institutional affiliations so my commissioners are quite literally my employers for any number of months, which means that I am usually just a bit nervous to meet them.

The Things They Made

By Dan Visconti
The sheer amount of stuff that is created during the course of an opera production is truly staggering.