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11/18/11: I've had a very busy semester so far, and have a great new performance to share with you. My recent work, "Fight or Flight" for violin and guitar was performed at Indiana University as part of the Midwest Composers Symposium. You can read a very nice description of the events and review from the concerts on sequenza21. Fight or Flight is an extremely virtuosic work that I intended to be a musical adrenaline rush, and the performance of the two IU students, Delyana Lazarova and Jonathan Godfrey, was amazing! I hope you have a few minutes to watch the video of them below.

8/24/11: As the summer draws to a close, I want to share a number of recordings that I've recently put up on my website. I just uploaded the recording from the premiere of my violin sonata, 'Beautiful Savior,'. Towards the end of June, I had a most enjoyable time in Memphis at the Belvedere Music Festival, and you may also find a recording of Geometries at the festival's website.

Finally, the premiere of my clarinet concerto, Bennu's Fire, went extraordinarily well at ClarinetFest 2011. Alexander Fiterstein's interpretation was extremely sensitive, and the performance of the California State University Northridge wind ensemble under Larry Stoffel was energetic and brilliantly colorful. I have recordings from the premiere posted on my Bennu's Fire page, and I embedded a video of the second movement below. Here are some notes regarding this second movement:

Many firebird myths state that the bird's cry is a singularly beautiful song. The second movement seeks to represent this, highlighting the beauty and lyricism of the solo clarinet over a series of varying textural accompaniment intensities from a lone vibraphone to a clarinet and saxophone duet, a timpani roll to a full-bodied brass presentation of the melody. Following a cadenza from the soloist, the full ensemble plays an expansive elaboration of the original song. From this, the solo clarinet descends gently to a place of calm and serenity.

6/16/11: I just posted two more videos - the Road Trip recording session and last February's Phobos premiere by the FiveOne new music ensemble in Cleveland (embedded below). I edited the performance video with the video created for the piece by Ross Wilbanks. I must say that FiveOne's performance that night was stunning - Phobos has some wicked technical demands, especially in the last two minutes, and they pulled it off extremely well. Enjoy!

6/10/11: The premiere of my violin sonata, subtitled "Beautiful Savior," went extremely well. The musicians from the Chicago Ensemble, Mathias Tacke (violin) and Gerald Rizzer (piano), did a superb job tackling what may be my most difficult composition. The performance also received an excellent review, and there is a possibility that it will be programmed again during their next season.

I have also just posted new recordings of my string quartet, Road Trip. It was recorded in surround using 7 different mics, though the recording I have posted is just a stereo mixdown of the surround version. The quality is a huge step up from what it was before, and I definitely encourage you to head over to the Road Trip page and give it a listen.

I've also updated my performances page with some new information. I found out that my clarinet concerto, Bennu's Fire, will be premiered on Friday August 5, and my performance of Geometries in Memphis later this month was moved up one day to June 25. Violinist Joe Kneer, for whom I wrote "Beautiful Savior," will perform it in Baltimore sometime in September, exact date and time TBA.
5/18/11: The clarinet concerto, Bennu's Fire, is finished! There is now a page dedicated to that work, and I will post a recording when it is available after the premiere this August.

Since I finished the concerto, I've been significantly updating this website. I have created numerous pages for works that didn't have their own pages previously, and I have also added Paypal links to most of my compositions to allow easy and secure purchasing. Among the compositions with new or updated pages to go up are Dark and Stormy Night for piano with ping pong balls and obligato page turner, Green Flash for orchestra, Road Trip for string quartet, Roaring Fork for orchestra, Geometries for clarinet, violin, cello, and piano, Northern Lights for piano trio, and a number of my compositions for string orchestra.

I have also posted a couple new recordings and will have more coming soon. Below you can listen to my electroacoustic composition, Blue Screen of Death, as well as watch a video of the premiere of my organ composition, Ecstatic Prelude.

Zare - Blue Screen of Death (electroacoustic) by Roger Zare

3/28/11: This has been and continues to be an unbelievably busy semester, but the end is in sight. I have had a number of great performances recently and I will post recordings from some of them soon. Lately my big project has been a concerto for clarinet and wind ensemble that is a commission from the fabulous clarinetist, Alexander Fiterstein (he recently premiered my chamber work, Geometries). This commission would not be possible without support from the California State University, Northridge and the University of Minnesota. It will be premiered at ClarinetFest® 2011 this August with the Cal State Northridge Wind Ensemble. Stay tuned for more updates...

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