When it came time to commission a piece for the Nova Chamber Music Series, artistic director Barbara Scowcroft knew exactly who she wanted for the job: local composer John Costa.
"John wrote a piece of music for the Utah Youth Symphony, and I liked his style very much," Scowcroft said. "He's someone I really enjoy working with."The Nova Chamber Music Series will premiere Costa's work during its final concert of the season on Tuesday, May 19.
In speaking of the many musical influences upon composers of today, Costa says, "I certainly have a modernist influence, but there is no one aesthetic that is pervasive in my music. There is also a strong influence of music that's very accessible. This kind of flexibility is my way of finding my individual voice."
For the Nova series, Costa has created a work called "Chrysanthemum." His intention was "to write a one-movement piece which has an energetic continuity from one contrasting section to the next."
Costa, a Salt Lake resident, made the move to Utah four years ago when his wife Julie Wright accepted a position on the University of Utah vocal music faculty.
In addition to his work as a composer, he is presently on the adjunct faculty of the university.
Costa is the recipient of several important fellowships in composing and the winner of the 1990 Georges Enesco International Competition. His orchestral works have been performed in Utah by the Salt Lake Symphony and Utah Youth Symphony, and he has received artist's grants from the Utah Arts Council.
The congenial composer has even been found in local elementary schools helping Utah schoolchildren compose their own operas as part of Utah Opera Company's outreach program.
"Chrysanthemum" will have its world premiere Tuesday at 8 p.m. in All Saints Episcopal Church.