Michael S. Rothkopf, Composer
Compositions
I grew up in Colorado and have always found inspiration in the abstract beauty of the terrain, colors, climate and wonder of the West. To my thinking, listening to music in its most pure, abstract form, offers a similar and equally profound experience. It is this pure form and experience that I strive to create in my music. To that end, I focus much of my creativity on melodic line, counterpoint, color and clarity of form. 

My creative work also embraces themes of time, perception and remembrance. I am fascinated by the many ways time is perceived in music and how our remembrance of places and moments are tied to music. My work also explores combining and juxtaposing both traditional and experimental ideas in new meaningful ways. 

Most recently, I have turned my attention to creating interactive works involving performers and computers. In these works I create performance environments that intensify improvisational and interpretive music making.

I am currently working on creating a new work for alto flute for flutist Kristina Der, a set of songs for soprano Theresa Radomski and a new work for saxophonist, Steve Stucek.

I recently completed a new work for flute, clarinet, violin, cello, marimba, piano and computer titled Crossed Destinies and Other Stories. My goal in this work is to create a balance between composed/interpreted music and improvisation.  I was inspired by author Italvo Calvino's book The Castle of Crossed Destinies, in which Calvino, creates a set of intertwined short stories all generated from a Tarot card reading.  In my work, I created a set of Tarot cards each with a distinctive musical phrase.  The performers are asked to draw cards from the computer via iPad touch screen interface and improvise a musical narrative based on the cards each performer draws.

I created a work for wind quintet (flute, oboe, clarinet, soprano saxophone and bassoon) titled Psalm in White Chalk.  This work draws on the ensemble improvisation ideas I created in my 2013 work, I Dream of Coloured Inks.  Psalm in White Chalk was inspired by a work titled Divinity by artist Victor Ekpuk.  Divinity was a large composition hand drawn in white chalk.  Divinity was displayed at the North Carolina Museum of Art for one year and was then erased.  I sought to express in music some of the same ideas I saw visually Mr. Ekpuk's work.  Psalm in White Chalk was premiered in January 2019 by Tadeu Coelho, flute; Jaren Atherholt, oboe; Oskar Espina-Ruiz, clarinet; Robert Young, soprano saxophone and Saxton Rose, bassoon.



Compositions

Crossed Destines and Other Stories for Mixed Ensemble & Computer (2019)
Psalm in White Chalk for Wind Quintet and Computer (2018)
Gitanjali for Flute and Computer (2013-2017)
Interchange for Violin and Computer (2017)
Into the Landscape for Marimba and Computer (2016)
Chaconne for Piano and Computer (2015)
Two Wings for Soprano, Bassoon and Computer (2014)
I Dream of Coloured Inks for Two Flutes and Computer (2013)
The Light We Are for Small Chorus (2012)
Sonnets for Tenor and Computer (2011)
Catskill Eagle for Tenor, Violin and Computer (2010)
The Gift Half Understood for Computer (2009)
Lyric for Cello and Computer (2008)
...at a Crossroads for Bassoon and Computer (2007)
Azimuth for Violin, Viola and Computer (2006)
Songs of Light for Soprano and Computer (2005)
If You Came This Way for Computer (2004)
Night Dances for Viola and Computer (2003)
Symmetries for Piano (2002)
Improvisation for Flute and Computer (2001)
In My End is My Beginning (2000)
Bagatelle for Woodwind Quintet (1999)
Six Haiku for Soprano, Clarinet in A and Computer (1998)
Fuga for Two Pianos (1997)
A Winter Partita for Flute (1996)
At the Still Point for Computer (1995)
Equipoise for Orchestra (1994)
Remarks on Colour for Bass Clarinet and Tape (1991)
String Quartet (1990)
Quieto for Guitar and Computer (1989)
Cantus Sinfonia for Orchestra (1988)
Quintet for Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, Viola and Guitar (1987)
Ghost Song for Tape (1986)
...is as the Grass for Double Bass (1985)
I am Slow as the World for Soprano (1984)
Sonata for Oboe, Clarinet and Electronic Playback (1983)
Sinfonia for String Quartet (1982)
Untitled for Piano (1981)
Variations for Bb Clarinet, Violin and Double Bass (1980)
Photograph for Cello and Tape (1979)
Preludes for Flute, Cello, Piano and Percussion (1978)
Movement for Orchestra (1978)
The Effects of Chiaroscuro for Violin, Viola, Cello and Reader (1977)
Phoenix for Flute/Alto Flute, Violin, Viola, Cello and Piano (1976)
Duo for Violin and Piano (1975)
Prelude for Piano (1975)
Stars, I Have Seen Them Fall for Soprano and Piano (1974)
Four Short Movements for Piano (1974)
Untitled for Orchestra (1973)
Untitled for String Orchestra (1973)
Air for Flute and Cello (1973)
Trio for Flutes (1972)
Duo for Flutes (1972)