Summer Sun, Winter Moon (Lewis & Clark)

  • “Kapilow’s composition, ‘Summer Sun, Winter Moon,’... appears destined for national media attention. ... The piece does not preach. It uses music’s power to let the listener contemplate on the journey.”
        — Paul Horsley, The Kansas City Star

’03: This New Immense, Unbounded World (Louisiana Purchase)

  • “As its offering in New Orleans to the celebration of the bicentennial of the Louisiana Purchase, the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra presented Rob Kapilow’s ’03: This New Immense, Unbounded World. The new symphony was the culmination of two years of collaborative effort between a noted composer and the people of Louisiana, and the music was as dynamic, passionate and heartfelt as the people of Louisiana in the early years of the 19th century. It was an evening worth the wait. ...The music grew naturally from Kapilow’s research into the Louisiana Purchase and poetry by New Orleans writer Dalt Wonk. Kapilow’s style throughout the five-movement piece was an eclectic mix of modern and traditional harmonies, especially when he was attempting to evoke the similarities between the present time and that of the Louisiana Purchase. Particularly memorable were the sections dealing with the plight of American Indians and Creoles, whose lives were changed forever by the Purchase, and those of Napoleon and Jefferson. The final movement restates the title of the work and introduces the theme of water flowing round and round. It is a vision of the Mississippi River as the link between the two ages.”
        — Times Picayune (New Orleans)

Monuments at the Millennium (D.C.)

  • “No event has quite captured the prevailing ideology of classical music in America like the premiere of Rob Kapilow’s “Citypiece” last night at the Kennedy Center Concert Hall...The piece itself was offered as a musical monument, a collective act of music-making and listening intended to bring the city together. Diversity was the order of the day. So, too, inclusiveness, participation and empowerment...The choral settings are very well written, and a movement that is a pastiche of Charles Ives’s clashing-bands style has much of the vigor and polyphonic interest of its unnamed inspiration.”
        — Washington Post

  • “In his unending search for harmony, composer Rob Kapilow writes symphonies that include everyone. And he asks lots of questions. That’s where the bespectacled musician gets his creative energy. ... Judy Greenberg, the [Kreeger Museum]’s director, loved the idea and the music. Most of all, the director saw the possibilities for unity. She told Mr. Kapilow that Washington had to have a ‘Citypiece,’ too. ‘It made you smile. Mr. Kapilow interspersed other pieces of music into it, but the piece had a spirit of its own,’ Ms. Greenberg says. ‘The music had energy; it was exciting, and you felt the personality of the piece.’ Ms. Greenberg remembers how the music brought Kansas City together. She hopes ‘D.C. Citypiece’ does the same for the District. ‘We have such a divided city, and this is a good step toward uniting everyone,’ she says.”
        — Washington Times

Shuttlecocks (Kansas City sculptures)

  • “Citypiece: Shuttlecocks incorporated old tapes of honky-tonk piano, quotes from the ‘Missouri Waltz,’ ‘Home on the Range,’ and ‘Take Me Out to the Ballgame,’ [with] snatches of jazz, the stamping of feet and some vocal ejaculations from the players. Shuttlecocks is fun and funny.”
        — Tim Page, Washington Post

  • “How could you not like Citypiece: Shuttlecocks? Friendly, witty, and deftly crafted...the music was charming and clever, and it was spectacularly played.”
        — Scott Cantrell, Kansas City Star