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It being the hottest spell of the year I have, of course, come down with a stinking cold.  I cancelled yesterday’s work, instead dosing myself up to the eyeballs with various concoctions, and will probably have to go easy today as well if I am to get back up to speed for the rest of the week.

I have had to continue getting on with things at home even feeling significantly under the weather.  Surtitles, translations, cuts, arrangements, transpositions for Anghiari are now, as far as I can tell, all done, and anything not yet complete cannot be done until we get out there.  I am apprehensive of the amount of work, as it is always more than I imagine, but I hope that better preparation this year and a slightly lighter rota of concerts will enable me to breathe every now and again during the 2013 experience.

That experience will include two performances of the Suite For Two Clarinets, of course, and here’s to the hope that I might reappear in the Festival programme in 2014.  Last weekend there was also a performance of Shew Me Thy Ways at Mary Abbots, beautifully performed, as always, and finely balanced.  I liked the large-scale structure of this piece, hearing it again after a few years.  It felt very long-breathed and spacious, which is what I was aiming for, and I began to pick up a few of the smaller details I had put in as well once we had run through it a couple of times.

Make no mistake, cold or no cold the last few weeks have been pretty busy, and the putting of new notes onto paper has fallen down the list of things to do, even if it is always at the top of my mind.  It is still only the 16th, however, and I am optimistic of getting both the Exeter and string pieces finished by the end of the month, several weeks ahead of schedule.  I know that last year in Anghiari I was writing a competition entry (ultimately unsuccessful, but put aside for future use) and, fingers crossed, a more sensible approach to the whole week will enable me to get my own things done alongside everything else.