Music Well – Dosia McKay, Composer, Painter, Writer

Reflections on Art and Life

The Cemetery

Cemetery in Wejherowo. This section dedicated to small children. Growing up in Poland, I was never sheltered from the reality of death and suffering. I remember visiting the graves of … Continue reading

September 21, 2018 · 1 Comment

A Winter Memory from Poland

A winter memory from Poland, many years ago: Apocalyptic amounts of snow paralyze the entire country. Trains equipped with plows are not able to get through. Forget about buses and … Continue reading

January 23, 2016 · 1 Comment

Swimming in the Sea of Invisibility

I didn’t like my arts teacher in elementary school and the sentiment was reciprocated. I did not agonize over the fact as the teacher didn’t like any of her students. It … Continue reading

January 6, 2016 · Leave a comment

Scissors

I have a thing for scissors. I have to have several pairs in the kitchen, in my painting studio, in the sewing kit, and some smaller pairs for grooming. I … Continue reading

August 26, 2015 · Leave a comment

Geometry, Language, and Music – My Path to Composition – Radio Interview on “Zero Crossings”

What do geometry, language, and music have in common? The ancestral shadows, George Michael, and creative loneliness – it’s all there. I am talking about my convoluted path to composition … Continue reading

August 11, 2015 · Leave a comment

Unquenchable

I was not born with a paint brush in my mouth. My father was an engineer and spent hours (after work) drawing futuristic cars with ink pens on graph paper. … Continue reading

August 7, 2015 · 1 Comment

Women Who Shape Us

I will wish my Mother a happy Mother’s Day on May 26 because that’s when the Polish celebrate it. Today I am posting a photograph of my Grandmother. Not a … Continue reading

May 10, 2015 · Leave a comment

Winter Music for Woodwind Quintet

As my current home town of Asheville is expecting the coldest temperatures of the year, I thought I would post some winter music I composed during my early period (undergrad … Continue reading

February 19, 2015 · Leave a comment

Arts Education Behind the Iron Curtain, Part 2

If you have not read the first part of this essay, you might benefit from reading it to establish context of the following. The first day at the Conservatory was … Continue reading

February 13, 2015 · Leave a comment

Arts Education Behind the Iron Curtain, Part 1

I feel very privileged to have devoted much of my life to the study and practice of music. Having attained degrees from two American universities after completing studies in the … Continue reading

February 4, 2015 · Leave a comment

I am an Exhibitionist

I am no psychologist, but sometimes I think that our adult years are only meant to be spent resolving our childhood dramas and fulfilling our infantile dreams. Why do I … Continue reading

January 22, 2015 · 4 Comments

Christmas Archangel

Small talk potluck smiles Clench my jaws tight Just like stage fright An hour of social delight In a less-traveled corner My weathered friend I finally gird myself With long … Continue reading

December 25, 2014 · Leave a comment

Awakening – New Media Painting

No matter how hard I try, I can’t get away from color. I have to restrain myself not to turn the saturation all the way up. I think I know … Continue reading

November 28, 2014 · Leave a comment

Where Does a Talent Come From?

Where does a talent come from? It’s a lucky combination of genes, sometimes from the immediate ancestors, and sometimes from generations far beyond our knowledge. Here is a photograph of … Continue reading

June 3, 2013 · Leave a comment

New Piece for Vibraphone and String Quartet

I am writing my new piece for vibraphone player Jason DeCristofaro. Jason is a talented musician both in the classical field and jazz. He is also a published composer. The … Continue reading

April 24, 2013 · 1 Comment

New Music for Vibraphone and String Quartet

My new piece for vibraphone and string quartet is taking shape. I don’t remember when was the last time I put so much joy and vibrant color into a composition. … Continue reading

April 13, 2013 · 4 Comments

Dosia McKay – Composer Portrait – Part 1

If we have not met in person, this might be the second best. In this candid video I discuss my pathway to composition, the sources of inspiration for my music, and … Continue reading

March 7, 2013 · Leave a comment

Who Needs Art?

Before my grandmother died, I had enough foresight to ask her to write down a few stories from her life. She left a beautiful diary describing her childhood, adolescence, and … Continue reading

October 9, 2012 · Leave a comment

Enchanting Soundtrack to a Short Film “The Garden”

I recently completed a demo soundtrack to “The Garden” (2009) – a short film by Jason Stefaniak. Enclosed is only a short fragment of the film. My goal in writing … Continue reading

April 22, 2011 · Leave a comment

The Bubble Tree – Winner of the Skirball Film Scoring Competition

My score to The Bubble Tree, an animation by Ran Jing recently won the Skirball Film Scoring Competition and was premiered by the NYU Symphony Orchestra in a live concert … Continue reading

March 14, 2011 · Leave a comment

New Soundtrack to a Scene from Ivan’s Childhood

Here is a scene from Ivan’s Childhood (1962) by Andrei Tarkovsky I scored recently. I recorded the soundtrack at the new Dolan Studio at New York University. Ivan’s Childhood is … Continue reading

March 28, 2010 · Leave a comment

Christmas Archangel

Small talk potluck smiles Clench my jaws tight Just like stage fright An hour of social delight In a less-traveled corner My weathered friend I finally gird myself With long … Continue reading

January 2, 2010 · 1 Comment

Seven Colors of Love

Love is green Like freshly-cut grass Raw earthy and sour The stiff sharp blades Pierce your bare feet Without apology Love is blue Like mother’s blouse Soft ruffles brush Against … Continue reading

April 5, 2009 · Leave a comment

Two Moods – New Music for Clarinet and Piano

1. Haunted 2. Wind Chimes (Samples from a live performance by Jeffrey St. John Sherwood, clarinet and Melony Maness, piano, March 29, 2009.) I am happy to unveil Two Moods … Continue reading

January 29, 2009 · 2 Comments

Twenty Years of Dust

Twenty years of dust Mama never was big on Perfect moments Daddy heard No swelling soundtracks When he looked at her Only raw and earthy Belonging When she held his … Continue reading

June 24, 2008 · Leave a comment

Daddy’s Gal

Don’t you worry child You will never starve Your bubble gum smile Will break daddy’s heart You can order him around He will get you the red car Cause you’re … Continue reading

April 11, 2008 · 2 Comments

If My Brother Were In Town

If my brother were in town We would waste no time Discussing the weather I would parade him on the waterfront And with a paralyzing gaze I would let the … Continue reading

January 21, 2008 · Leave a comment

Colargol – Music Influences, Polar Bears, and First Loves

It would be very sophisticated and high-brow to list Scriabin or Schoenberg as my musical influences. Brahms might be classy, and Bach perhaps too predictable. But in all truth and … Continue reading

December 18, 2007 · 4 Comments

New Music for Woodwind Quintet

I have finished writing a Woodwind Quintet entitled “Snow Angels”. It was inspired by a breeze of fresh air at the end of a long and humid summer in East … Continue reading

November 9, 2006 · Leave a comment
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