Funded! This project was successfully funded on March 30, 2013.

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National Association of Composers wants Tesla's Pigeon at their Spring 2013 NYC concert, and I want the best performers for the job.

Listen to Tesla's Pigeon:


My name is Melissa Dunphy, and I'm a composer; a couple of years ago, I wrote a song cycle for soprano and piano about Nikola Tesla, called Tesla's Pigeon. It's been performed all over the place, but sadly, never in New York City, Nikola Tesla's adopted hometown and the place where the song cycle is set. However, the East Coast chapter of the National Association of Composers, USA, recently proposed to have Tesla's Pigeon performed at their Spring 2013 concert at Christ & St. Stephen's Church on 69th Street on April 22. Exciting!

One hurdle: I have to bring the performers.

I wrangled Jessica Lennick and Tim Ribchester into performing Tesla's Pigeon in Philadelphia in 2011 [Photo: Kendall Whitehouse]
I wrangled Jessica Lennick and Tim Ribchester into performing Tesla's Pigeon in Philadelphia in 2011 [Photo: Kendall Whitehouse]

Jessica Lennick and Tim Ribchester have not only performed Tesla's Pigeon live before, they've made a studio recording (available on Bandcamp). They really love the piece, and I'm so lucky to have them as champions. But they are also professional musicians, and asking them to work for free isn't something I'm comfortable doing. Unfortunately, as a lowly grad student/emerging composer, I don't have the means to give them what they deserve. That's where you come in.

Silk screens of Robinson Smith's design drying in the composer's office
Silk screens of Robinson Smith's design drying in the composer's office

Make a pledge, and I have fancy handmade Tesla's Pigeon merch to give away as rewards, featuring gorgeous artwork by Robinson Smith, and we'll autograph everything before we send it out. 

Any extra funds raised will go toward hiring Tim and Jess to perform my next composition: an opera about the sex life of Ayn Rand. I'm working on it right now. It's going to be pretty boss, and also the biggest project I've ever taken on, so I promise none of that money will go to waste.

Large-format hardcover binding of the Tesla's Pigeon orchestral score, which will be recorded by the Curtis Orchestra on April 29. Get one by pledging $300!
Large-format hardcover binding of the Tesla's Pigeon orchestral score, which will be recorded by the Curtis Orchestra on April 29. Get one by pledging $300!

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Everything about this concert is worked out, except for the performing artists' income. I'll be shuttling Jess and Tim to NYC in my tiny little car, and NACUSA is all ready to receive them. This fund drive is the last step!

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    12 backers

    Audio download of Tesla's Pigeon, performed by Jessica Lennick and Tim Ribchester ($2 less than the current price on bandcamp.com!)

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    21 backers

    Audio download of the orchestral (!) arrangement of Tesla's Pigeon, scheduled to be read and recorded by the Curtis Orchestra and Jessica Lennick later this spring.

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    26 backers Limited (4 left of 30)

    Limited edition digipak CD of Tesla's Pigeon -- signed by the performers and composer.

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    5 backers

    Copy of the Tesla's Pigeon score -- signed by the performers and composer.

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    9 backers Limited (21 left of 30)

    Limited edition hand-screened print of the Tesla's Pigeon artwork by Robinson Smith -- signed by the performers and composer.

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    9 backers Limited (1 left of 10)

    Crazy promo pack of Melissa Dunphy compositions - CD's of Tesla's Pigeon, the Gonzales Cantata, and What do you think I fought for at Omaha Beach, a Tesla's Pigeon silk-screen, a Gonzales Cantata tshirt (specify size at end of campaign), and a score of your choice from mormolyke.com, signed by the composer. Probably some other goodies thrown in for good measure.

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    1 backer Limited (4 left of 5)

    Dinner with the composer and performers in NYC before or after the concert (April 22), venue TBA -- or if you're a brotherly lover, in Philadelphia on another date. Let us lavish you with our gratitude in person!

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    0 backers Limited (3 left of 3)

    Extremely limited edition, unavailable for sale, hardcover large-format score of the new orchestral arrangement of Tesla's Pigeon, hand bound by the composer and signed by the composer and performers.

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Funding period

- (30 days)