Robinson McClellan ~ composer




Welcome to my website, where you can read about me and listen to my music. As an antidote to my formal bio, I'd like to offer a more personal introduction. And while you're here, also take a look at my photos.

So: where does my music fit within the vast universe of the music in the whole world today? Sometimes other people have a clearer perspective on us than we do on ourselves, so I asked Carson Cooman, a friend and fellow composer, to offer his view:

"Your diverse interests have found expression in everything from orchestral works to music for highland bagpipes, and congregational songs taught by rote. But it's the same thing that draws connections to early music (in something like your Nunc dimittis) or to pibroch in the pieces with those obvious connections [for example, Organ Mass], or to the El Salto music / Music by Heart hymnal /your memory piece, which all deal with memory and how we perform music in a very basic/fundamental manner. And it's this same curiosity which led you to feel a connection to the Byzantine project (something that many composers wouldn't really find of interest) or the create the kind of Passion setting you did. It would be an inaccurate oversimplification to say that your music is Western concert music all inspired by pibroch. There are composers who one could say things like that about — like Osvaldo Golijov, whose music really connects with a single kind of folk tradition (a Latin-Jewish folk music) or somebody like Dinos Constantinides, whose work is a Western concert music working out of Greek folk music. But, although many of your works have pibroch connections, not all have that as their most obvious influence — like say the Passion According to Mark, which is connected to early American music, or the Nunc Dimittis or St. Nicholas music with Renaissance/Medieval European connections. So, that is why I see a broader thread running through it all — and I think it's the same sort of things that have driven you towards El Salto and folk traditions, exploring a very fundamental kind of musical making experience — which is something that used to be much more a part of music than it tends to be today in the concert music world."

Anyway you, the reader, will be the best judge of all this. Please go and listen!




In the MacDowell woods.
photo by Joanna Eldredge Morrissey