Biography: Nicholas Edward Martens Osborn, (b. 1995) currently a junior at Central Michigan University (CMU) studying music composition with a minor in instrumental performance on oboe. He grew up in Grand Ledge, Michigan, just outside Lansing. In high school, he performed in many honors bands such as the Michigan Youth Arts Festival Orchestra (2014). Concurrently, he began to arrange various video game pieces for different ensembles. Gradually, he began to explore his voice through composing. During his senior year, he began taking composition lessons with Justin Rito, a graduate student at Michigan State University. That year, the first performance of one of his works took place at CMU’s Summer Music Institute. Since enrolling at CMU, he has taken lessons with the nationally commissioned composer, Dr. Scott Harding and he currently studies with renowned band composer, Dr. David Gillingham. He also currently studies oboe with Dr. Lindabeth Binkley. Additionally, Nicholas was a member of CMU’s Chippewa Marching Band on alto saxophone and Wind Symphony on oboe. Lastly, he is the secretary of CMU's chapter of the international professional music fraternity, Delta Omicron.

List of Works: 2015: The Dancing Flute (Flute and Piano) Discovery (Flute, B♭ Clarinet, Percussion, and Piano) 2016: Nothing Gold Can Stay (Soprano, Oboe, and Bass Drum) My Sky (Soprano and Piano) Big Bad Boss (Saxophone Quartet)

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Nothing Gold Can Stay

Nicholas Osborn, oboe; Brooke Wilson, mezzo-soprano; Quin Manley, bass drum; Venue: Central Michigan University, School of Music, Staples Family Concert Hall Concert: Composition Studio Recital; Date: Saturday, April 9, 2016: 2:00 p.m.; Text: "Nothing Gold Can Stay" by Robert Lee Frost; Nature's first green is gold,/ Her hardest hue to hold./ Her early leaf's a flower;/ But only so an hour./ Then leaf subsides to leaf,/ So Eden sank to grief,/ So dawn goes down to day/ Nothing gold can stay.// Robert Lee Frost’s poem, “Nothing Gold Can Stay,” conveys to me the concept of the impermanence of our universe. Likewise, it can seem the only constant in our existence is change. The piece, virtually throughout, is a call and response between the vocalist and oboe. The texture is filled out by the bass drum, which symbolizes a beating heart. Growing in volume throughout, the piece concludes with the only instance of all three voices sounding at once. The continuous increase in volume conveys a building of emotions as one comes to terms with the harsh truth that everything they know will, one day, cease to exist. As I went through the change in my life that motivated me to write this piece, I am reminded to cherish that which I have, for it is not guaranteed in the next year, week, day, hour, or even moment.

The Dancing Flute

Meghan Cullen, flute; Ariel Da Costa, Piano; Venue: Central Michigan University, School of Music, Staples Family Concert Hall Concert: Composition Studio Recital; Date: Sunday, November 8, 2015: 7:30 p.m.; The Dancing Flute took on many forms since I set out to compose it, in 2013. Initially, a three-movement work scored for full-band accompaniment. However, upon further study, I decided that composing a single movement, for piano accompaniment, would surpass my initial idea. The work opens in tango style, with stark dynamic contrasts. Its baseline is inspired by “L'amour est un oiseau rebelle” (Habanera), popularized in Georges Bizet’s opera, Carmen. The middle section is more lyrical, with less jarring changes than the opening. The work concludes via a variation of the opening theme. Dedicated to my high school friend, Diana, who was both a very avid dancer and flautist.


Samantha Brown, Flute; Hannah Brown, Clarinet; Storm Benjamin, Percussion; Ariel Da Costa, Piano; Venue: Central Michigan University, School of Music, Staples Family Concert Hall; Concert: Composition Studio Recital; Date: Sunday, November 8, 2015: 7:30 p.m.; Discovery chronicles the journey from ignorance to knowledge. At its onset, the solo clarinet sets the melancholy mood. However, it is ambiguous, in tonality, between major and minor, representing the fact that ignorance is sometimes bliss. The middle section depicts the learning process; the mood becomes more foreboding and chaotic here, symbolizing the struggle of attempting to grasp a difficult concept. In the last part, the initial theme returns joyously and energetically, illustrating the feeling one has when he or she finally masters something.

My Sky

Rebecca McCauley, soprano, Ariel da Costa, piano Venue: Central Michigan University, Park Library, Auditorium Concert: Inter-Art Festival Date: Thursday, April 21, 2016: 5:30 p.m. Text(first three stanzas only are used): My Sky --Francesca Ferrara Good morning, good afternoon, good evening/ How do you do?/ You walk on bye/ And I know it’s you/ I see your smile, I see the truth/ And my sky, my sky, my sky, my sky sees you// I’m wandering down the street/ My heads lost up in the clouds/ Leaves falling around me/ And they push me to the ground/ And I look up to my sky/ And I see, I see the truth/ Truth is…I can see only you// Good morning, good afternoon, good evening/ What can I say?/ Quit looking at me/ You’re taking my wind away/ You make me shiver, like a winter breeze/ My sun gets dimmer when you’re far from me/ But my sky, my sky, my sky, my sky sees you// My heart feels your beat/ Pulsing around me/ Our hands are intertwined/ Your eyes lock with mine/ We look up to the stars,/ The moon is shining bright/ And my sky; it’s falling for you tonight/ Good morning, good afternoon, good evening/ I’ll see you soon/ In my dreams, or in the sky/ Like Peterman you’ll teach me to fly/ My heart will beat for only you/ Hold me close, I’ll be true to you/ Because my sky, my sky, my sky only sees you// Francesca Ferrara’s poem, “My Sky,” conveys to me the concept of new love. The subject of the poem seems to desperately seek the affection of the one her sky sees. Throughout their day it seems all the subject can think of is how much the subject is in love with this person and how awful the subject’s life is without them. The poem seems to end with a hopeful mood, conveying that maybe the subject and the subject’s lover will be able to be together one day. In my setting of the poem, I mostly use a bright mood to convey the joyous feelings of love only briefly shifting to a darker mood when the subject considers how bleak the subject’s life would be without the subject’s lover. The work then ends with a very similar statement to the way it began to symbolize the hope that the one the subject pines for will reciprocate the subject’s feelings.