No Thank You, John (2007) is a setting of a Christina Rossetti poem by the same name. Rossetti (1830-1894), known best for her poems “Goblin Market” and “In the Bleak Midwinter”, takes a delightful turn for the snarky in this poem by wittily telling off a suitor who will just not take the hint. The trombone as such becomes its own character—that of “John,” the suitor Rosetti wants nothing to do with.
This work was premiered by two of my closest friends in my undergraduate degree, Rebekah Smeltzer Staley (now a performer, teacher, and vocologist in the Austin, TX area) and Adam Stokes (a freelance trombone teacher and bass trombonist in the Washington, DC metropolitan area). The YouTube video on the right is from our reprise of the work for my doctoral recital in 2013.