Eric Xu

   The Young Musicians Competition expresses its sincere appreciation to New York City Department of Cultural AffairsThe Host Organization for this grant is St. Pauls/St. Lukes Lutheran Church Sam Ash Music Corp. Their support has helped make this year's Competition possible. Composition Competition 2006First Place Winner Eric Xuholding his Prize Winning CompositionThe Lord of the Rains for string quartet  Excerpt from the score of the beginning of the development section"Lord of the Rains does indeed allude to Lord of the Rings, in terms of mood, as this piece is very moody.  In general, this piece was influenced partly by Edvard Grieg.  It is very calm, but fast in some areas, and legato but cold.  This twist of mood is demonstrated with some tonal/melodic contradictions and dissonance, especially in the development section.  It also portrays a misty atmosphere in a forest, illustrated by the opening motif.  This eventually develops into a cold but calm, light rain that is surrounded by fog.  The cello playing the pizzicato G minor and D minor arpeggios under a viola ostinato also illustrates drops of rain.   The title is supposed to illustrate that this wet and coldness is all 'controlled' by a rain god, hence 'Lord of the Rains.' "...Eric Xu.Students preparing for the performance of Lord of the Rains Left to right:  David Hsieh, 1st violin; Dennis Lee, 2nd violin; Eric Xu, composer; Alexandra Kelly, viola; Semmie Kim, celloEric Xu was born in Beijing, China.  By first grade, he had started playing violin with his father as his teacher.  In 2002, he wrote his first piece.  It was a thirty-second work for solo piano with a simple melody and no knowledge of chords and theory.  As time progressed, Eric started to learn theory through a number of books.  After a couple years, his interest shifted from the Classical style to Late Romantic and Neoclassic styles.  From then on, he has been writing mostly for larger ensembles or full orchestra, including a violin concerto in G major.  In eighth grade, one of his pieces was performed by the Bridgewater-Raritan Middle School orchestra in the Spring Concert.He is now a sophomore at Bridgewater-Raritan High School, and performs in the High School Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Mr. Joseph Lalumia.  Since ninth grade, Mr. Lalumia has been guiding Eric in his composition, and has been very supportive.  Eric is currently working on his 42nd piece, which is a standalone overture for full orchestra.  The Lord of the Rains can be seen as one of his smaller scale compositions, and, like several other works, portrays or is influenced by either nature or an event.  Other than composing, Eric is assistant Soundman at his local church, and a violinist on the youth worship team.  He is also enrolled in the Music Honors Society at school.      Rehearsing the Quartet David Hsieh, 1st violin; Jennifer Hsieh, 2nd violinAlexandra Kelly, viola; Semmie Kim, cello The Lord of the Rains for string quartetas performed at the Competition Finals  Performing the Quartet Recording Engineer, Jeff Cavorley  Photographs, Jeff CavorleyAssistant, Jim Mauro