Under Bleak Skies

“Local composer Jennifer Butler’s musical lament for the ocean ‘Bleak Skies’ started from warm string textures on a ground bass but was eventually dominated by a persistent, disquieting piccolo that brought many shades of torment to the work.  Structurally, it was interesting that the piccolo seemed to gravitate to a fixed high note just like the bottom strings did earlier with the low note.  The prospect for the ocean may be ‘bleak’ but I prefer something like ‘Disquieting’ Skies as a more accurate title for what was actually going on here.”

–Geoffrey Newman, Vancouver Classical Music


“Neptune (Jennifer Butler) was beautifully remote with as much silence as notes”

— LLoyd Dykk, Vancouver Sun

For Dreams of Things that Cannot Be

“Butler’s For Dreams of Things That Cannot Be also grounded itself in the resonance of its sounds, flooding the air with chimed, sustained chords in the piano that set off the more wayward intensity of the long flute tones. Butler seemed to become aware of how foreign to each other and yet how compatible the instruments are. This comparative exhibition of sounds was so contained that it jarred somewhat when McGregor hummed a few notes late in the piece — as if a third person had shown up during an intimate dinner for two.”

— Robert Everett-Green, Globe and Mail