After a lot of faffing about, more than usual, I have to admit, I have finally managed to get close to a text for the Exeter College piece, and better still is that it is a text with which I am happy, rather than one with which I am trying to make do. There will be some bits of editing to come, I am sure, and maybe a few cosmetic changes here and there but, permission permitting, I am happy to go scribbling with this one for the time being.
When hunting texts for a choral work it is crucially important to find something with which one can work from the outset. The drier the text the less likely the musical result is to be satisfying, and I think I have written my better stuff when more inspired (although I dislike that word when applied to composition) by the words at hand. What makes this selection particularly satisfying is that it is Exeter-specific in many ways, while providing universal sentiments. Let us see where the music takes us.
Yesterday having been the closest Monday to the beginning of the month there were all sorts of chores to deal with, which meant that actual writing came close to the bottom of the list, but the horizon is clearer for the next few days, and I am hoping to get a decent head of speed up with the string piece. Even without a pencil in hand, it is always in the back of my mind, and I hope that the simmering effect of keeping the ideas over a low heat will make things happen with relative ease once the graphite comes out in earnest.
I am looking forward to June as an opportunity to get this and other writing done before various other commitments over the summer. It has been nigh on three weeks since I last settled down to a routine for myself, what with jaunts to Anghiari, the Isle of Wight and the Lake District, and longer still, thanks to all those arrangements, since I have felt able to get on with my own writing. I know that those pesky Anghiari introductions are still to write, sitting out there waiting to pounce, so it is up to me to make hay while the sun shines.
While I am at it, I shall try to continue with my surely doomed attempt to listen to all my CDs this year. I am way, way behind on this and have some serious catching up to do. It also helps that I have spent a little cash on upgrading my computer equipment, making work that much easier to face and smoother to execute. My laptop has a new hard drive and my desktop some shiny new RAM to help it get around all those Sibelius thoughts just that little bit faster. The internet is nice and zippy too. It all goes to make the experience less stressful, even if more computer woes are liable to strike at any time.
June is also a month of a couple of opportunities for me, so we shall see where they lead. I always assume that nothing will happen on any particular score until proven decisively wrong, fruit of long experience and protracted dealings with my well meaning but slightly errant builder, but it is always good to have irons in the fire. The tiles on the bathroom wall look quite fetching as well – apparently herself at number 33 has been casting admiring glances and now wants something similar chez soi.