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Featured Works
For the full list, see List of Works
For my current and future projects, see Projects

exquisite creatures with fins and fronds (2022) -

Performed and recorded by Robert Brown, Sherry Du, and Benjamin Giroux. This is a product of collaboration with The Smithsonian Environmental Research Center. 

exquisite creatures with fins and fronds is music that celebrates the beauty and energy of marine biodiversity. An excerpt from Sally Andrew's essay written on the wall of the
The National Aquarium of Baltimore inspired me to explore this topic. She wrote: “...exquisite creatures with fins and fronds, tentacles and wings, colourful and transparent, tiny and huge…There is nothing the ocean has not seen." Biodiversity is essential for prosperity, resilience, and vitality of our oceans. By celebrating it, I wish to reiterate the importance of diversity.

Three Images from Assateague Island (2021) - guitar

Written for and performed by David Manzanares-Salguero

I visited The Assateague Island State Park in February 2021, when the world seemed frozen and motionless in the midst of the COVID-19 Pandemic. I was withering because I was away from human interactions, Nature, and liveliness. I felt like I was going into indefinite hibernation. I needed to go somewhere to breathe fresh air. 

Assateague Island was tranquil and dull at first glance. Without any greens, it seemed dry and bare. I strolled along the long wooden trail over the marsh, stopped at some point, and viewed a vast field aimlessly. But as I stood there quietly for a long time, I began recognizing things I hadn't noticed before. From the marsh that seemed lifeless, I heard a subtle rustling. Minutes later, I could identify not a single, but much more bustle from here and there. Invisible to my eyes, small mammals were busily foraging on the ground, probably collecting seeds and wild berries. Tiny fishes were taking a bath in small puddles filled with sunshine. As I became focused, my ears opened to sounds from the air. Subtle drumming from a woodpecker echoed from a forest afar. I could hear gentle whispers of breeze and quick flutters of tiny birds. The marsh was tranquil as if time had stopped, but when I delved into it, it was full of energy and life. Despite everything that happened to the human world, Nature was busily living in the moment as it had before. It was soothing.

SN1054 (2020) - string quartet.

Written for and recorded by Bergamot Quartet

This is a product of collaboration with The Space Telescope Science Institute

20th-century astronomers discovered that the Crab Nebula has continuously expanded since its creation and that it started from a single point about a thousand years ago. When astronomers searched for relevant ancient astronomical records, they found ancient records from China, Iraq, and Arizona of the 1054 year that depicted the sudden appearance of a bright star. With curiosity and awe, the astronomical event was observed and documented, which modern scientists identified as the death of a star, Supernova 1054.
My music is a tribute to people who tirelessly study, explore, accumulate, and pass the knowledge to the next generations.

Give me my leg back! (2019) - soprano/narrator, fl. 

Written for and performed by Pique Collective

Give me my leg back! (내 다리 내놔!) is inspired by a Korean folk tale under the same name. It is the story of a wife who commits awful things to cure her husband’s leg. As a child, I listened to numerous versions of this story told by neighbors, relatives, and even friends of my age. Every time I listened to the story, its growing tension toward the climax always scared and excited me at the same time. As a composer, I realized how amazing storytellers they were. Immersed in their own story, the storytellers seamlessly drew the audience to the world they had created. Their stories grew up inside me, and now, it is my turn to tell my version of the story. This music is a tribute to all my childhood storytellers.

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