When I was writing this piece, I was imagining the colorful landscapes and coasts of California. They have a certain spirit and feel that is unique to them and not found anywhere else on Earth. These special environments have long inspired California artists to create works of art that are contemplations of distinctive beauty. Artists like the architect Frank Lloyd Wright http://www.franklloydwright.org/, the woodworker Sam Maloof http://www.malooffoundation.org/, and the California Impressionist painter Edgar Payne http://www.edgarpayne.com/, to name a few, have drawn inspiration directly from the gorgeous natural beauty of California. It was in this same spirit that I wrote the piece entitled “Crystal Cove” for violin and piano.
I had in mind the harmonies and textures of Debussy and Delius, but I wanted to create something spoken in a sincere language coming from someone who grew up in California. I had never been to Crystal Cove, but I had been to the coast many times and had in mind a specific kind of color and texture when I was composing it. When we visited Crystal Cove I noticed how much this place looked like the place I imagined while composing this piece, so that’s how it came to be named after this place. I would highly recommend you visit this park. You can read about it at http://www.crystalcovestatepark.com/.
This is the video of the first live performance of Crystal Cove taken on November 16, 2013 in Claremont, CA. Special thanks to pianist Nico Marucut who first told me the piece was good and who performed with me in this concert and to Ken Glaser who made the video.