A Tale of Separation


for string orchestra (2015)





7 min.


string orchestra

Program Notes

A Tale of Separation, at surface level, is a piece that manipulates a compositional idea of unison and division in terms of pitch. For example, the Violin I, II, and Viola section may be playing a single pitch, only to then momentarily split off (and perhaps return to that previously unified pitch shortly thereafter). It’s a simple concept, but one to which I wanted to dedicate an entire piece.

One of the greatest challenges I have ever faced in life is both beautiful and heartwrenching at the same time. I was engaged to my wife for almost a year upon completing the composition process of this piece. However, she lived nearly 850 miles away. Our relationship began from a distance with occasional weeks or months of physical togetherness through travel. That being said, I wanted to reflect both the beauty and the pain of our engagement. Being in love is a wonderful part of life; yet, being separated for weeks and months on end becomes emotionally tasking.

A Tale of Separation, at its core, is a piece of music that reflects the bittersweet love Maria and I went through upon each time we saw each other in person during those difficult months. Ultimately, we ended in togetherness through marriage.

Tony Manfredonia

Tony is a composer and orchestrator for concerts and multimedia living in Petoskey, MI. He provides a multi-layered and sensory experience through expressive, colorful orchestration and warm melodies. He adds new perspectives to stories, environments, and everything in between through massive orchestral productions, as well as intimate atmospheres.

With performances and readings from renowned ensembles such as Apollo Chamber Players, the University of Cambridge Concert Band, and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Tony’s music has been played across the globe.

He actively brings new music to his Northern Michigan home. Northern Symphonic Winds (NSW) of Charlevoix, MI, commissioned Tony to write a new piece for the ensemble, titled, On the Threshold of Spring, which premiered in May 2019. He is currently NSW’s composer-in-residence. Since 2018, he has worked closely with the Bay View Music Festival in Petoskey, with performances, premieres, and presentations for the summer students. In December 2019, he worked with The Accidentals, a local folk band, orchestrating their music for performance with the Traverse Symphony Orchestra.

Continually branching out into various styles, many of his projects involve sacred music: the full, orchestral score for Saint Luke Productions’ latest drama, “Tolton: From Slave to Priest,” their upcoming film, “Faustina: Messenger of Divine Mercy,” an Ave Maria for SATB Choir and Organ, as well as a Concert Band piece commissioned by Holy Ghost Preparatory School in Bensalem PA, “Rejoice in the Holy Spirit,” which premiered in September 2018.

All the while, Tony lives the life of a video game composer, constructing sonic spaces and emotionally-driven tracks to enliven each game’s world. His most recent, completed soundtracks are that for Kharon’s Crypt and Rot:Purge. Currently, he is working on the music for Call of Saregnar, a 90’s-inspired low-poly 3D RPG. Bridging the gap between “game music” and “contemporary classical music,” he continually strives to have his soundtracks performed as a means to draw in new audiences to the world of classical music. One example is his Suite from Kharon’s Crypt, an orchestral medley of tracks from the Kharon’s Crypt soundtrack.

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