Duration – 6′

Written – 2020

for SATB Saxophone quartet, Piano, Celesta, Xylophone/Large Metal, and Vibraphone/Triangle


Fixate was commissioned by the University of Michigan Concert Band for the Winter 2021 semester.

“Fixate” simply refers to its definition as a verb “cause (someone) to acquire an obsessive attachment to someone or something.” I based a lot of this piece off of the insistence and persistence of obsession, intrusive thoughts and negative thoughts. In particular I had started the piece by assigning specific types of these thoughts to each saxophone player (hopes, worries, regrets, and misunderstandings), but ditched the idea for something more broad and encompassing in the end. I used staging and aleatory in this piece to try and draw connections between the idea of being grounded in reality vs in one’s head, as well as rhythmic interplay/fusion to emulate the fluidity of obsession. This piece marks the first of a series of pieces to follow, all with subsections of the same instrumentation that will deal more specifically with some of the themes presented, musical and conceptual.