Don’t Be Afraid

Duration – 8′

Written – 2021

for SATB Choir and Percussion


“Don’t Be Afraid” was commissioned by percussionist Zachary Cook.

My initial concept for this piece was to write what would amount to a siren song. In reference to the mythological creatures known for luring victims to their death by singing an inescapable and hypnotic lullaby. The atmosphere and musical material is heavily influenced by horror sound design in film that I like to take inspiration from in many of my pieces. The piece relies heavily on a chorus of whispers that take effect many times throughout. This to try and “lure” the audience into the song. Along with other sea and horror aesthetics the piece takes advantage of a solo percussionist. The percussionist can use two separate vibraphones of different tuning to create a gloss over the resonance. Along with a few cymbals all of this is used to create the effect of still and moving waves for the whole of the piece. I wanted to both literally tell a story of a siren song but also expand on ideas of harmful persuasion and unreliable sources of comfort which is a common reality. The lyrics are always warm and inviting but the music will otherwise tell a different story.