D.C. Meckler

 What style of music do I write?  Neo-Rhythmic Poly-Romantic Post-Classical.”  By which I mean:  “Poly-Romanticism“ denoting both a dream of the rigor of modernism and an impulse towards luxury.  In so many ways Modernism is an extension of Romanticism, the moral passion of art remaking society.  I can’t quite give that up, but then I am quick to indulge in whatever amuses just me.  The “Neo-rhythmic” part is about various simple post-minimalist rhythmic devices and an interest in grooves that skip, based on fragmented polyrhythms.  “Post-Classical” is of course Kyle Gann’s great term.



Composer David Meckler's recent music often features simple, sometimes fragmented, polyrhythms, often in the context of unusual meters; the pitch language is sometimes freely diatonic, but rarely with traditional harmonic functionality. 


Scenes from his Apollo 14, A Space Opera were presented by the New York City Opera in 2002. His musical experience includes horn playing (new music, a polka band, various orchestras and chamber music groups) and studies in composition at the University of California, San Diego (Ph.D.), and the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati (MM). His teachers include Rand Steiger, Roger Reynolds, Frederick Bianchi, Jonathan Kramer, and Allen Sapp. He teaches music courses at Cañada College, Redwood City, and has taught music, arts, and humanities courses at Skyline College, San Bruno, the University of California San Diego and the University of the Pacific in Stockton, California.  He is interested in science (BS Physics, Lafayette College) and in the social dimensions inherent in music.  He was born in El Paso, Texas.  He and his wife MaryLouise currently live in Redwood City. 


E-mail about music would be gladly received at mecklerd [at-sign] smccd [dot] edu .






Apollo 14, A Space Opera, an opera presented by the New York City Opera in the Showcasing American Composers Vox 2002 festival.
The Bank Robbery, short opera;  soprano, baritone & chamber ensemble; after a short story by Steven Schutzman

Chamber Music - vocal 

The Albion Deity Songbook, for medium voice and piano, original texts
Speed No Motion, for medium voice and piano, on Shakespeare Sonnet 51
Two Republics
, for tenor voice and piano, text by Robinson Jeffers
            Shine, Perishing Republic
Shine, Republic
Natural Duet,
2 soprano voices & piano; no text
The Bank Robbery, short opera;  soprano, baritone & chamber ensemble; after a short story by Steven Schutzman
Finding Voice
song cycle on the poetry of A.R. Ammons, for two sopranos & chamber ensemble
         So I Said I Am Ezra
            The Pieces of My Voice
Scene for a Snakewoman
, for mezzo-soprano with piano, text by Eugenie Chan

Choral Music

Natural Music, SA chorus, 2 horns, harp, piano; text by Robinson Jeffers
(SATB version also available)
Wind & Stone, SA chorus with piano; text fragments 
Black Cat, SATB chorus, alto flute, purrcussion, black piano, text by Lourdes Sian
Solstice Carol,
SATB chorus with piano 4-hands, text by the composer
Bright Love, for SSSAAA chorus with piano and Vibraphone
On Contradiction, for SATB chorus with piano, text by Walt Whitman 

Chamber Music - piano 

Sonata Rocinante, solo piano score pdf and audio demo available
Weird Blues 
New! score pdf and audio demo available
Quiet Tangle 
New! score pdf and audio demo available
Retro Variations
Elliptical Midnight (Nocturne 2005)
, solo piano. live performance on YouTube and pdf score available
Reclamation, solo piano
six short pieces in seven for two pianos.  audio demo of third movement
Two Pieces After a Poem (Stonecutter, Old Poems),
two pieces for solo piano.  score pdf and audio demo available
Three studies for solo piano
    Conversation Piece, My Bundled Dances, AABA    
Container (score in pdf file)
Stuck Piano, two pieces for solo piano

Chamber Music - standard ensembles and solos

Insidious Asymmetries (Can you tell the same joke 2 1/2 times?) for chamber ensemble
Brass Quintet
score pdf and audio demo available
, for chamber ensemble
Piano Trio
Symmetry Jumps, woodwind quintet
Treffpunkt, for horn, violin, and piano
Doubled Variations, for large chamber ensemble
Rebound, for chamber ensemble
Sirius Melody/Groove Cafe, for chamber ensemble
Brooklyn Reel
miniature for solo violin
First Deconstruction in Wood, solo percussion

Chamber Music - unusual ensembles

unnamed dance, 3 percussion, 1 piano
, viola, cello, piano, 2 perc.  Audio example 
Bliss, for cello, piano, and Vibraphone
Leucadian Waves, for small chamber ensemble (music for an experimental music video)

Other Works

a list
Gear, for orchestra
HOUSE: Stability/Fragility, music for theatrical dance work; synthesized audio recording; performable by percussion duo plus piano duo
Scientists Say, theater piece for 4 actors with incidental music; synthesized audio recording; performable by 3 clarinetists 
YNOT, music for a Derek W. Beck short film, synthesized audio recording; performable by percussion and piano



Supported in part by . . .

David Meckler’s music has been supported in part by commissions and grants from the American Music Center’s Copying Assistance Program, the Lane Family Charitable Trust, the Skyline College Partnership for Excellence, the Skyline College President's Innovation Fund, and the American Composers Forum.

Reviews and articles about my music

Reviews, comments, and articles about my work have appeared in the Buffalo News (New York), the Orange County Register, 20th Century Music, the Village Voice, the San Francisco Classical Voice (website), the San Jose Mercury News, the New York Times, the San Mateo Daily Journal and the San Francisco Chronicle.  Selected highlights of reviews ranging from “stark and gruesome” to “an oasis of serenity” and “very fresh.”

San Francisco Chronicle19 May 2000

Some reviews I've written

Choral music in the Bay Area, 1998
Rova saxophone quartet, 1998

    (larger version and a headshot)    Photo credit: Rick English Pictures




[updated/revised  August 2010]