fEARnoMUSIC | Somewhere I Have Never Traveled, the Music of Bonnie Miksch

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Somewhere I Have Never Traveled, the Music of Bonnie Miksch


21st century chamber music that explores the boundless realm of human experience: states of consciousness, emotions, dreams, and memories.
Genre: Classical: Chamber Music
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  Song Share Time Download
1. Song of Sanshin
11:38 $0.99
2. Somewhere Like You, My Darling
9:52 $0.99
3. Man Dreaming Butterfly Dreaming Man
14:26 $0.99
4. Somewhere I Have Never Traveled: I. In a State of Vibration
4:11 $0.99
5. Somewhere I Have Never Traveled: II. Dweller on the Threshold
4:06 $0.99
6. Somewhere I Have Never Traveled: III. In a Body of Blue Stars
5:11 $0.99
7. Somewhere I Have Never Traveled: IV. Sexploration
4:20 $0.99
8. Somewhere I Have Never Traveled: V. In a Field of Golden Light
4:35 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Somewhere I have never traveled, the music of Bonnie Miksch

Somewhere I have never traveled is a new music recording project and collaboration between Oregonian composer, Bonnie Miksch and the Portland, Oregon based modern classical music ensemble, fEARnoMUSIC. Miksch’s chamber music explores the boundless realm of human experience: states of consciousness, emotions, memories, and dreams. All recording was completed in 2015 in Portland at Kaul Auditorium, Reed College. The album includes the world premiere of the title track, Somewhere I have never traveled, a five-movement ensemble work commissioned specifically for this project. It is documentation of both fEARnoMUSIC and Bonnie Miksch’s most meaningful and passionate work to date.

Bonnie Miksch is a composer who writes both acoustic and electroacoustic works. Her music explores the distinctly human realms of emotions, dreams, and states of consciousness, and combines diverse elements with an ear for coherence. Her music has been performed in Asia, Europe, Canada, and throughout the U.S. She has received commissions from Meet the Composer, Fireworks Ensemble, Beta Collide, and the Oregon Music Teacher’s Association who awarded her “Oregon’s Composer of the Year” in 2011. Her works have also been performed by fEARnoMUSIC, newEar, and the Portland Vocal Consort, and presented at international, national, and regional venues including ICMC (China, Greece, Singapore, Denmark), The International Contemporary Music Festival (Korea), SEAMUS, the Third Practice Electroacoustic Festival, the Society for New Music, the New World Arts Electrocoustic Festival, Electrogals, and Cascadia Composers. Her music is available on the North Pacific Music and Aca Digital labels. With degrees from CCM at the University of Cincinnati and Syracuse University, she serves as the Coordinator of Composition Studies at Portland State University, where she has taught music theory, composition, and computer music since 2004.

Works included on this album, as described by Miksch

Song of Sanshin

Paloma Griffin Hébert, violin
Nancy Ives, cello
Jeffrey Payne, piano

Song of Sanshin uses the traditional Korean piece, sang-ryung-san, as its point of departure and point of return. In addition to these clear statements of the melody, several expressive elements derived from sang-ryung-san are explored throughout the piece. These elements include: a strong sense of rhythmic freedom and fluidity, phrase endings on long notes punctuated by short eighths, abundant use of grace notes, trills, and other embellishments, and the use of the pentatonic scale as a harmonic skeleton.
The work is symmetrical in structure, projecting an approximate arch form, as inspired by symmetry in Korean art and the contour of mountains. There is a strong use of heterophony present in this work, where the three instruments play an embellished and out of sync unison, thus realizing the Korean principle of variety within unity. The sensual complexity of the interior sections seek to complement the simplicity of the opening and closing meditations.
Because sang-ryung-san was a prayer to the Buddha on the spiritual mountain, I was also inspired by the idea of the spirit of the mountain, as embodied by Sanshin, who was a traditional figure in Korean shamanism. My intent was to instill in the music a reverence for mountains, mysticism, and the inner longing of the soul. Mountains suggest journey, perhaps solitary, but with a sense of connection to all who have traveled the same still path.

Somewhere like you, my darling

Inés Voglar Belgique, violin
Joël Belgique, viola

Somewhere like you, my darling was commissioned by Jöel Belgique in 2013 for his wife Inés Voglar on the occasion of her birthday. I wanted to write a piece which would showcase their brilliance and musicality as performers, and allow them plenty of interpretive liberty. I found I couldn't separate the concept of Joël and Inés as a couple from my image of them as artistic partners. So, I decided to let the piece be wildly romantic, passionate, intense, flirtatious, and lighthearted, all within the span of ten minutes. The title of the work suggests the transportive nature of our deepest intimate relationships, the way the other enables a way of being that changes our very relationship with ourselves and our sense of what is possible in this world.

Man dreaming butterfly dreaming man

Inés Voglar, violin
Jeffrey Payne, piano

Written in 2002 at a point in my life where I was reconnecting with the importance of dreams in my creative work, this piece is a sonic rendering of the following celebrated quote by a Taoist philosopher who lived over two thousand years ago:

“Once upon a time, I, Chuang Chou dreamt I was a butterfly, fluttering higher and thither, to all intents and purposes a butterfly. I was conscious only of my happiness as a butterfly, unaware that I was Chou. Soon I awoke and there I was, veritably myself again. Now I do not know whether I was then a man dreaming I was a butterfly, or whether I am now a butterfly dreaming I am a man.”

Chuang Tzu, Chou Dynasty

Somewhere I have never traveled

Inés Voglar and Paloma Griffin, violins
Joël Belgique, viola
Nancy Ives, cello
Joel Bluestone, percussion
Jeffrey Payne, piano

Somewhere I have never traveled was commissioned by fEARnoMUSIC and features six of the core members of the ensemble. This piece unravels in five movements, each of which represents aspects of my personal experiences navigating the non-physical realm. I always find myself “in a state of vibration” preceding any conscious exit and these waves propel my mind into a heightened state of anticipation. The first barrier is fear and its manifestation as a loathsome “Dweller on the threshold.” Once fear has been overcome, there is seemingly no limit to what we can experience in the great beyond. The final three movements illustrate this. I have had experiences as a diaphanous being “in a body of blue stars,” as a sexually depraved creature without ethical limits, and as a witness to the golden light of pure love.


Founded in Portland, Oregon in 1992, fEARnoMUSIC has been consistently praised for its unusual and innovative programs, as well as for performances that are passionate and humorous. The ensemble is committed to promoting the chamber music of our time, from composers living and working today in the Pacific Rim, the Pacific Northwest, and the world. The group has presented the World or United States Premiere of more than thirty new works, by such masters as Tomas Svoboda and William O. Smith, and exciting young composers Kenji Bunch, Bonnie Miksch, Shaun Naidoo, Laura Schwendinger, David Dzubay, and Ryan Francis.

fEARnoMUSIC have been featured artists on Seattle’s KING Radio and All Classical Portland KQAC Radio. As recipients of a Continental Harmony (sponsored by the American Composers Forum and the National Endowment for the Arts), fEARnoMUSIC premiered David Dzubay’s “Northwest Passages” in collaboration with Lewis and Clark Bicentennial, a work chosen to represent Oregon in the celebration. fEARnoMUSIC has also received grants from the Copland Fund for Performing Ensembles, the Regional Arts and Culture Council, the Templeton Foundation, and the JackStraw Foundation. The ensemble is proud to have performed in famed Merkin Hall in New York at the invitation of acclaimed Portland composer and current Artistic Director, Kenji Bunch.

In 1997, in conjunction with Oregon Music Teachers Association, fEARnoMUSIC initiated the Young Composers Project (YCP). Currently sponsored by the Templeton Foundation, this innovative and unique program gathers young composers (grades 6–12) from around Oregon for workshops over a nine-month period. During the workshops, the student composers develop their compositional ideas, experiment with orchestration, and get their works professionally performed and recorded. Since its first year, the project has resulted in composition winners at both regional and national levels. The YCP has been featured by Oregon Public Broadcasting’s TV program Oregon Art Beat, All Classical Portland KQAC, Oregon ArtsWatch and Chamber Music America magazine.



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