Advent Calendar: 3

Today has been just insanely productive, I’m delighted to report. I’ve spent almost the entire day on composing and composition-related tasks. The morning was mostly taken up with admin. I finally got some emails off about a project I’m doing with a printmaker-friend in Scotland and a CD I’m hoping to get happening with a pianist-friend in Australia, so I’m hoping to have both of those underway very soon.

I also did some rough layout on the first two minutes of the Rothko string quartet and sent the score and parts for this opening section off to my string quartet and am absolutely delighted that they’ve set up a rehearsal for next week, so hopefully we’ll be able to run through this section and then I’ll know if it really works. Listening back to it after a few days away, I really am very pleased with how this work is coming, and relieved that I’ve kind of put my foot down (gently) and told my tutor that I think this is going to be a longish-term project because of needing to rewrite just about everything I put down to slow down the rate at which I introduce new material. So pleased, in fact, that I put the MIDI rough (straight out of Finale) up onto AudioBoo for the world to hear:

The afternoon was mostly taken up with working on a Christmas carol. This is my task for my next lesson with Errollyn Wallen, on Wednesday morning. I adore Christmas music of just about any persuasion, but particularly carols, and given that this was supposed to be just a quick homework piece, I decided I wanted to take a fairly traditional route and write something that might be appropriate for congregational singing. The text is by Martin Luther, and is called ‘A Christmas Carol for Children’ although that seems a little cumbersome and specific, so I’m calling my carol ‘Good news from Heaven’. I’m quite pleased with what I’ve pulled together and am about 2/3 of the way through writing an organ accompaniment for it. Given the traditional nature of the tune, I’m kind of embracing the Christmas cheese with the accompaniment and going all out with pedals and figuration and so on. There are even grace-note runs! It’s been a lot of fun. Planning on finishing this off tomorrow morning and doing a rough recording ready for Wednesday.

And I went to the post office and picked up the parcel containing my Da’s present from Djelibeybi 🙂

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