In Thursday’s (4/22) New York Times, Vivien Schweitzer writes, “Jennifer Higdon wishes there were a 12-step program on how to deal with all the various stages of composing anxiety, she said, laughing, on Sunday in the spacious apartment here that she shares with her partner, Cheryl Lawson. ‘Starting a piece is the worst,’ she said, ‘and that can stretch from one day to three weeks of agony. The cats run and hide.’ Despite the angst, Ms. Higdon, 47, comes across as friendly, down to earth and upbeat. And her creative struggles have paid off. She was awarded the Pulitzer Prize this month for her Violin Concerto, which she wrote for the young soloist Hilary Hahn. … Marin Alsop, music director of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, has conducted and recorded several of Ms. Higdon’s works, including the lively Percussion Concerto. She described her music as American in its immediacy, vitality and sense of optimism. Echoes of American composers like Aaron Copland can be heard in works like ‘Blue Cathedral,’ the most frequently performed piece in the 2007-8 season of those composed during the past 25 years, according to the League of American Orchestras.”

Posted April 22, 2010