This piece is partly influenced by the eco-political writings of Jane Bennett. She views the world as one in which speaking subjects and mute objects "participate in heterogeneous assemblages in which agency has no single locus, no mastermind, but is distributed across a swarm of various and variegated vibrant materialities." In the case of a performance, energy can be transfered between performers, audience, instruments, space, musical materials, etc. The ecology of a performance is such that the various human and nonhuman agents have equal contribution in the resulting environment. Solis one is an attempt to focus on the mediation of energy (the liminal stages) between the performers and instruments, where both the mute and speaking materials have the same roles in revealing the energy flow amongst body movements, actions, and sound projections.
Solis one was commissioned by the Guerrilla Composers Guild for Transient Canvas.
Jon Yu (b. 1988) is a Taiwanese-American composer whose works explore notions of ritual, utility, and excess. His music has been performed in Germany, Singapore, and throughout the United States by ensembles and soloists such as Ensemble Signal, Wet Ink Ensemble, Trio SurPlus, Wild Rumpus, Transient Canvas, clarinetist Matt Ingalls, saxophonist Brien Henderson, and trumpeter Chad Goodman. He has received fellowships from festivals such as the June in Buffalo Festival (2014), Dian Red Kechil International Young Composers Residency (2015), and the Walden School Creative Musicians Retreat (2014).
His recent projects include a commissioned piece for poet and flutist Wayla J. Chambo, a new work featuring Korean instruments for the 2017 Pacific Rim Music Festival, and a collaboration with trombonist Weston Olencki and saxophonist David Wegehaupt. He holds degrees from UC Santa Cruz and San Francisco State University, and is currently pursuing his PhD at UC Berkeley. His principle teachers have been Ken Ueno, Edmund Campion, Franck Bedrossian, Cindy Cox, Richard Festinger, and Benjamin Sabey. He has also participated in master classes and private lessons with composers such as Kaija Saariaho, Joshua Fineberg, Eve Beglarian, Josh Levine, and Hilda Paredes.
Jon currently resides in Oakland, California, where he composes and teaches while working as production manager for the Center for New Music and the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players.