In the coming months I will have the amazing opportunity to fulfill the ‘When in Rome do as the Romans do’ command, as a visitor in Rome for the three autumn months as the Fromm Fellow at the American Academy in Rome, hoping to use the time to fulfill a number of commissions while taking in the sights and sounds of this great city. You can certainly say that the timing is right, coming as it does concurrently with the new phase in life known as “empty nest”, now that our sons are both in college. Upon returning to the U.S., three new compositions will have their premieres. I am especially excited about “Moon Songs”, commissioned as a companion piece to Arnold Schoenberg’s seminal work “Pierrot Lunaire” by Dolce Suono Ensemble, a Philadelphia-based ensemble that has invited me to be its Composer-in-Residence and Artistic Co-Curator for the coming season and will feature several of my compositions in its programs, in Philadelphia, New York City, and other locales. Of various performances in the past season I would note a gorgeous performance of the full version of my “Credo/Ani Ma’amin” by the National Irish Chamber Choir directed by Paul Hillier, one of Europe’s preeminent choral conductors, at the International Choral Festival in Cork, Ireland. The full version of this same work will have its first New York performance next May, by the New York Virtuoso Singers.