Author Archives: David Smooke

Performing as Self-Advocacy

I’ve found that my concertizing experience has helped me to communicate my ideas in three different ways: building trust with the musicians who are learning my notated compositions, demonstrating the techniques I use in these pieces, and giving performers a sense of my musical aesthetic.

Performing as Composing

I had always wanted the sort of composer/performer relationship that would allow for collaborative conversations on how to experiment with the basics of performance itself, and now, by assuming both roles, I have created this relationship.

Adaptation and Transformation

Our brains are remarkable in their ability to change their shape in response to stimuli. As we undergo these mutations, we become different people.

Two Composers

Throughout my life as a musician, I’ve always felt like two different composers: the person penning my current music and the creator of the idealized visions that exist only in the most crepuscular regions of my mind.

Expanding Horizons

I recently began to feel hemmed in by the world around me. After a great deal of thought, I realized that this visceral sensation derived from my lack of recent exposure to wide open spaces.

Speeding Up By Slowing Down

The famous “zone,” the state of mind that allows people to do things that appear superhuman, seems to be a place where things slow down.

New Music Capital

Recently, the Atlas Theater concluded its first season of its New Music series, as curated by Armando Bayolo, and announced plans for their 2102–13 season.

Repeat Audiences

One inherent problem with building an audience for new music is the very fact that the listeners want to hear music that is new to them.

Oh, the Ironing!

Before a big event, it’s important to take a few minutes to iron my shirt. I know this tip seems trivial to the point of ridicule; however, it’s actually an important part of my routine. At a premiere, a million things can go wrong, and I take great comfort in knowing that there is this one small aspect of the performance that I can control.

Excuse the Geek Out, Part 2

Over the past few years, I’ve been changing my approach to musical notation. As I have become more certain about my musical ideas, I’ve begun pushing against the constraints of the software, goading it along a path towards creating scores that convey these ideas as clearly as possible.