Same Traffic, New Dance | Orchestra | 5'

Recording available upon request.

Same Traffic, New Dance was commissioned and premiered by the Modesto Symphony to celebrate David Lockington's 10th Anniversary as Music Director.

Attending the Graffiti Festival in Modesto, CA in June 2017, I was struck by how Modesto's storied history of drag-racing and cruising intersected with the hundreds of vintage cars lined up, waiting for a parade in which they're not allowed to exceed a strict speed limit. It presented a strange juxtaposition: cars designed to go as fast as they can, stuck in traffic limbo. 


Living in Southern California, I have my own encounters with traffic near-daily. My best moments in traffic are when I transcend any frustration I feel and allow my mind to wander. I often think about whatever piece I'm composing at the moment, and sometimes I get so caught up in this that I forget where I am.


At the Graffiti Festival, some of the ballet dancers from Central West Ballet were present at the parade, too, taking photos against a seemingly endless backdrop of vintage cars. Another strange juxtaposition: ballerinas in traffic. Just as a composer might find herself stuck in traffic and dreaming of the piece she's writing next, a ballet dancer in the same situation might imagine whatever he's currently rehearsing.


Within Same Traffic, New Dance, we move between a fast-paced, congested traffic scene, full of revving engines and horns beeping, and a sort of hazy dream-state, imagining ourselves elsewhere. Near the end of the piece, we experience these together. Frantic traffic takes on a dreamy quality, as if we've finally discovered a new, calmer approach to seemingly inevitable frustration.



2 Flutes (Fl. 2 doubles Picc.)
2 Oboes
2 Clarinets in Bb
2 Bassoons

2 Horns in F
2 Trumpets in C
2 Trombones

Percussion 1 & 2:
Bass Drum


Snare Drum

Suspended Cymbal



Violin I
Violin II

early drafts and composing notes

Click on the score below to magnify it.