In writing Paragon, I wanted to showcase some of the viola’s virtuosic and technical aspects, especially concerning bow techniques and extended range. I wrote this piece in a different fashion than many of my other works; because I trained as a violist, I was able to simply improvise and transcribe large swaths of the work, lending to the stream-of-consciousness, rhapsodic feel, especially in the slower sections. I also wanted to challenge my own playing, pushing my own limits with a moto-perpetuo style of playing in the fast sections, and a freer and more gestural style of playing in the slower sections. The result is one which, for me, celebrates more of the underutilized aspects of the instrument.
Paragon has been performed notably by Michael Hall, and is also published in the NewMusicShelf anthology for Viola.