An image in my ear kicked off this piece, drawn from Coleridge's famous Rime, with a twist: here the Albatross, that great winged thing, wasn't slain and slung around the neck of a sailor but bound instead to the bow of the boat. A few choice contrasts emerged from there: heavy lightness, grounded flight, wet, weighted wings. Bound to the Bow is charged with such caged kinetic energy. Frantic wisps of sound tangle into dense, noisy webs. Bows swish across strings like birds in boxes: flapping without flight, clawing towards tone, trying to rise.
A finalist for the 2016 Pulitzer Prize in Music, Bound to the Bow was called "boldly individual" by the New York Times and the "most arresting of the world premieres" at the NyPhil Biennial by Alex Ross in the New Yorker. It was commissioned for the 2016 New York Phil Biennial and premiered by the Interlochen Arts Academy Orchestra at David Geffen Hall on June 5, 2016.