The theme on which eleven variations are based is built around the spontaneous vocalizations of my nonverbal son, Loren. One evening, I sat with him and listened to the singing and sounds that he often makes, recording them on my phone. I quickly returned to the recordings and transcribed two different segments of beautiful melody. The theme as arranged in this piece features these two phrases slowed down, played by the trumpet, and accompanied by the orchestra.
In each variation, I use elements of the theme to reflect on my life with my son, the struggles of learning how to connect with a child who has difficulty with the most basic aspects of communication, and the triumph of even the smallest successes.
What began as a mission to celebrate neurodiversity became an opportunity for me to connect with my son and hear his voice in a way I had not before. The music is born of intense emotion—sometimes painful and sometimes joyful—and of hope for a compassionate future where all people are loved and respected for their humanity.