A good few days, all told. We ran through Melody Divined with the Malcolm Sargent Festival Choir on Saturday as part of their Study Day, and, while it is still not entirely secure and away from the safety net of a piano accompaniment, it is still coming together nicely. The first performance proper of this will be on the morning of 10th August at Arundel Cathedral, with the second performance taking place a couple of hours later, as the choir will be providing the music at both services.
While on the subject of performances, after a slightly quiet patch it seems that things are moving again, and for different pieces, which is always encouraging. At the moment the following are on the list:
Flyht – 15th June, Exeter College, Oxford.
Of All Persons And Estates – 9th July, Westminster Hall.
against the pull of silence – 25th July, Anghiari Festival.
Flyht and Of All Persons And Estates will be on their third performances each, if my hasty finger-based counting is correct, while against the pull of silence will be receiving its first performance, something particularly exciting. I spent this morning performing small bits of nip and tuck on Estates, tightening up a couple of saggy corners and altering a few notes here and there in order to make things slightly less tricky for the choir. It is a real luxury to be involved with the same group of performers over several performances of the same piece, and to be given the opportunity to learn just what does and does not work and, more importantly, to have the opportunity to put things right. It is more of a hassle for the people providing the copies, for which I apologise, but I hope the result will be worth it.
I was also busy with some other projects this morning, having drifted slightly away from my focus over the last two months or so. After speaking with my other half yesterday I awoke with much more energy this morning and have been firing off a few scores and tracking down some opportunities which might prove useful. While I would like every approach to lead to a performance (or, even better, a commission and a performance!), the reality is that things just do not work that way and that, as always, tenacity and dedication are the twin pillars on which success must be built.
The garden also comes along nicely, although the weather is preventing me from getting out there too much. Even so, watching the birds throng around our feeders always lightens the morning, the peony has burst into bloom, and the mint is providing unending tasty (and free!) tea. Even my tentative attempts to get my fingers green are showing signs of success, holding out the possibility of chili con carne with home grown chili. Can’t provide the carne yet, though.
There is going to be a decent amount to get done in a very short space of time within the next six weeks. The Festival and Maratona in Anghiari are drawing near, with all the arranging and preparation that involves, and I really, really want to write as much of my own music as I can around all that. I have three and a half projects on the composition desk at the moment, but if the rest of the week is as productive as this morning I shall have a very happy weekend.