A good morning of work already, adding new material to the orchestral piece the day after my plan to work late in the evening fell at the very first hurdle. I read somewhere recently that willpower is a finite commodity that slowly runs down over the course of a day, and while that may or may not be true it certainly coincides with my own experience.
Early or late, though, at least a fair chunk of notes have gone down onto paper in the past twenty four hours, which is more progress than I might have hoped for during the impasse of the weekend. Better still, the movement is now beginning to acquire some kind of shape and direction, the central climax and the fall away at the end coming into soft focus.
I am also learning things all the time by working on a canvas of this size. I have written the two large-scale cantatas before, but both relied on their texts for form, whereas here the expression is voiceless. I still switch back and forth between the absolute and programmatic view of music, that it exists either as pure sound or instead describes something, and this piece probably sits somewhere in the middle.
I know that it is expressing something, and that the material has certainly been shaped by the experiences of the past few months, but I am some way from being convinced that the piece is about the past few months. Nothing ages as quickly as fashion, of course, and the composers I admire did very little that could be described as fashionable.
If the music has some kind of quality to it then that will be enough for me, but I must admit that I was a little taken aback once more yesterday to find myself asking what the point might be of writing a work like this which, as things stand, will probably never be heard outside my head. Am I writing this for other people or just for myself? And, if the latter is the case, might I not just be better off running back to something like Sibelius 7 instead?