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Elizabeth Anne Comninellis (b. 1986) is a composer, singer, and pianist. She is a doctoral candidate in music composition at the University of Texas at Austin where she studies with Yevgeniy Sharlat and Russell Pinkston. She holds a master's degree in music composition from the University of Colorado- Boulder, and a bachelor's degree in music composition, with emphasis in vocal and piano performance, from the University of Missouri- Kansas City Conservatory of Music and Dance. She is primarily a writer of large chamber works, many of which have theatrical bent. She regularly seeks out collaborative projects with other artists, especially in the fields of theater and dance. Many of her ideas are drawn from her committed Christian faith, from literature, visual art, and from working with other artists. She also enjoys writing works for children and regularly composes pieces for her students to perform. Elizabeth regularly collaborates with her brother, filmmaker Josh Comninellis. The Boulder Symphony Orchestra will premiere of As Lightning Flashes for symphony orchestra in April 2017. Her piece "White Birds," for clarinet and electronics, was presented at the 2015 New York Electroacoustic Music Festival. Her percussion trio, “Bringing in the Boat,” was chosen for the Women Composers of Hartford's 2015 international score call. She was awarded the Edward J. Levy Graduate Composition Prize for her song cycle “a man said to the universe…” and is a recipient of the Kent Kennan Fellowship at the University of Texas. Ms. Comninellis has studied with many acclaimed composers of modern art music, among them Chen Yi, Zhou Long, Paul Rudy, Carter Pan, and Dan Kellogg. Comninellis is also active as a performer and teacher. She currently holds a studio in voice and piano at The Orpheus Academy of Music in Austin, TX. Elizabeth regularly collaborates with her brother, filmmaker Josh Comninellis.

Compositions

Lady Wisdom and Solomon


PDF score

The Biblical Book of Proverbs is written by The Israelite King Solomon who is reputably the wisest man who ever lived. In it, he tells of the difficult choice between the greater and the lesser good; between the wise and the simple. The first often requires great sacrifice, yet leads to incredible fulfillment and joy. The other is undoubtedly more pleasurable, but, as C.S. Lewis said- pleasure is easy to obtain and it rarely delivers what it promises. Joy on the other hand, which is a natural consequence of wisdom, is not so easily grasped and often comes about through great sacrifice (Surprised by Joy, 1955). This timeless battle is one to which every human being can relate. In cartoons, it is the angel on one shoulder, and the devil on the other. Both make a convincing case- but in the end the person must choose. The Wise Woman, as depicted by Solomon, calls to the simple man. She calls out to him in the streets, both in the silence and the noise. She promises her way is that of pleasantness and of peace and restoration. But the other passions make their appeal, too. They are noisier, demanding and more turbulent. At the musical climax, the simple man’s wandering leads to absolute desperation, and finally to a decision- to make peace with wisdom. The work ends with a Song of promise from Lady Wisdom- who is sent by God as a guide to the simple man. The melodic material is drawn from portions of the Biblical Psalms which reinforce the promises of Wisdom in Solomon’s proverbs: You make known to me the path of life… (psalm 16:11) Your word is a light to my path… (Psalm 119:105) You restore my soul.. (Psalm 23:3) …in perfect peace… (Isaiah 26:3)


Peace I Leave with You (2015)


PDF score

Chamber piece for clarinet in A, two cellos and two vibraphones. Inspired by Jesus' words from John 14:27(NIV): "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid."