My Grandmother’s Ashes (and a Balloon) for Solo Cello

2011 | Commissioned by Rhonda Rider for her 2010-11 Grand Canyon Artist Residency | 3 minutes

Contact for score.


The Grand Canyon Project: Music for Solo Cello
Rhonda Rider, cello
MSR Classics [MS 1462] World Premiere Recordings

Program Note

Back in the late ’80s my brother saw an alien spaceship near the airport with my grandmother. This was after he thought he was Jesus and before he got the idea into his head that when our grandmother died he would rent a balloon and fly over the Grand Canyon to scatter her ashes. My grandmother died many years later when she was ninety-nine and left her body to science. With this lullaby, no balloon, no ashes, just the lilt of a memory wafting up and over the canyon rim.

— Howard Frazin (2011)

Select Performances

Taft-Nicholson Center

Stefan Koch, cello
University of Utah
Lakeview, MT
August 12, 2016

Music from Salem

Rhonda Rider, cello
Hubbard Hall
Cambridge, NY
November 12, 2011

Wupatki National Monument

Rhonda Rider, cello
Visitor Center
Flagstaff, AZ
October 7, 2011

Grand Canyon National Monument

Rhonda Rider, cello
Shrine of the Ages
Grand Canyon, AZ
October 6, 2011

Boston Conservatory

Rhonda Rider, cello
Studio 401
Boston, MA
September 24, 2011

Cary Institute

Rhonda Rider, cello
Westbrook, NY
September 23, 2011

University of South Florida

Rhonda Rider, cello
Tampa, FL
September 21, 2011

Imagination Celebration

Rhonda Rider, cello
(six performances)
Fort Worth, TX
May 2–6, 2011

Boston Conservatory

Rhonda Rider, cello
Sully Hall
Boston, MA
March 10, 2011

Grand Canyon National Park (Premiere)

Rhonda Rider, cello
Children’s Concert
Shrine of the Ages
Grand Canyon, AZ
February 24, 2011