Question: You’ve approached the music differently in Arms. With your previous projects, you wrote and performed everything.
Rich Shapero: I was doing a disproportionate amount of the work myself, because I couldn’t think of any other way to get it done. With Arms we ran a new experiment. My relationship with Orenda spans a decade, and I felt we had the chemistry to tackle this together. She wrote the music, I wrote the lyrics and she did the vocals. We came up with an iterative process that kept us together as the pieces evolved. For the arrangements, we used a number of musicians—some new, some we’ve worked with on previous projects. I’m very happy with the result. The music for Arms is as true to the spirit of the work as the music I’ve written and performed myself.