Missa Gravatus (2009)
"The sources of faith have always fascinated me. What is it that inspires faith in people? Is it divine inspiration, upbringing? Is it times of strife? After the deaths of my cousin and my grandfather, just months apart, I began exploring the nature of faith, because at that time, my own faith grew stronger as a consequence of the hardships I was enduring. The beginning sketches of 'Missa Gravatus' were the result. Most mass settings seem to be triumphant, with boundless praise for God and His deeds. I wanted to take a different approach. The music pleads with God rather than rejoicing in Him, asking for mercy instead of giving praise. I also wanted to mirror older (think Renaissance) settings of the mass and not accompany the music. This gives the music a stark, haunting quality, with silence being almost as important as the music itself. The work is as much religious as it is political. I hope to complete this work in the next couple of months, especially with recent uprising against oppressive regimes in several countries in the Middle East."