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It’s hard to keep up at the moment.  This morning was spent orchestrating a version of the Londonderry Air for a concert in a couple of weeks, which leaves one more piece to orchestrate.  At least, it would have done, had more work not dropped into my inbox yesterday evening, none of it arduous, but enough to push back the boundaries of getting back into my own writing.

Still, I sketched out one or two basic ideas for the Exeter College yesterday, and then spent some time in the evening researching some texts, delighting not only in the sound of the Old English (or at least my wonky pronunciation thereof) but also in the revelation that I recognised many of the words from my rusty German A-Level, acquired back in the days when speaking the language was a requirement for passing the exam.  I came over all enthusiastic, and am reading up here, there and everywhere about the likes of Cynewulf and so on, glimpses into a shadowy and alien world.

There is also the possibility of a performance of the yet unwritten work for string orchestra, perhaps in February next year.  Things are still very tentative, but it is good to have leads and interest in this piece, still little more than a dozen pages or so of accumulated sketches.

Much as I love orchestrating, a little like a grown up version of colouring-in, I am hankering to get back to my own pieces, really keen to play with harmonies, melodies, rhythms and the like.  As I have written before, I think that my technique at the moment is more solid than it has been for some time, even though there are always several areas which need improvement, and, while I am enjoying the cut and thrust of trying to get others’ notes to do what I want them to do, it is my notes I really want to hammer into shape.

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