I kept up the pace on the cantata yesterday, getting the first draft of the orchestration done up to the end of the third movement. Two movements still to go, and I think it should be done by the end of the week, at which point I think I shall dive straight into the second draft.

It is always good to have plenty of time on a piece, even if that is not always the way that things turn out. Many is the piece written to a tight deadline with which I am pleased, but I always feel that the ones that have had a chance to be polished are just that little bit more solid all around.

Time, of course, is the most precious resource for a composer, the fundamental reason for my period away from the frequent commute up and down the A303, and it already feels as though it is bearing results. Even those little areas that would otherwise be pushed aside have been remedied over the past few days, such as getting my mysteriously absent website to reappear as if by magic.

The writing is what it all comes down to, though, and performances are an integral part of that so I was very pleased to receive an email yesterday confirming a performance of Sweet Was The Song at St. Peter’s, Prestbury, Cheshire, on Sunday evening, thanks to the fine efforts of a couple of long-time members of Team Nick. Please do drop by is you happen to be around – I shall be tucked away in rural Somerset, but there in spirit.

Thanks to a couple of other developments this week I need to spend a little bit of time over the rest of the month polishing a couple of areas, proofing and tidying the catalogue. I had been planning to do this anyway, but I think it is fair to say that the year is beginning in a good way, so I need to harness that good stuff while I can.