30 March 2010

2 of 2 (in part)

Both of Sine Nomine’s performances of the Passion were wonderful, as good as the composer could have hoped, and better. The recording of the 21 March performance arrived, and fully vindicates the warm-fuzzy feelings.

I have been introduced (via e-mail) to a clarinet/percussion duo from Atlanta, DMC Duo (“DMC” stands for “devil may care”). Not surprisingly, they are open to new music (the devil you say?). And they will be touring in June, including a date here in Cambridge . . . so, yes, I’ve begun work on a 9-minute piece, Angular Whimsies (Heavy Paint Manipulation).

Last minute-ish, I have been engaged as a substitute tenor at First Church for this Sunday past (when we sang Casals’ O vos omnes) and next. For Easter, we are singing (almost all of) Britten’s Rejoice in the Lamb . . . only the second time I’ve been part of a performance of it, and really a fun piece. Paul found it understandably difficult to find an organist to hire for next Sunday . . . so he will play at the console. It was easier to find a conductor to hire, and so the Britten will be conducted by Tim Harbold, director of Oure Pleasure Singers — the choir who will join together with Sine Nomine in a May program to sing the Vaughan Williams Mass for double choir. Paul has also suggested that I give Tim a complimentary copy of the Alleluia in D for women’s choir . . . which I do think I have ready to hand, and can bring along this Sunday morning.

The Opus 48 is a convenient narrative hinge, for I called the St Paul’s Cathedral administrator yestermorn, and what should I hear over the phone receiver while I was on hold, but the Alleluia in D (SATB version). Probably still the old, old recording, but hey, my music is still in there. The occasion for my call was that I heard recently from an old friend that they had sung my Nunc dimittis (from the 2006 Evening Service in D) not long ago; so, I was calling to research the precise date (14 March). So there is still the occasional ‘residual’ Henning performance at 138 Tremont Street.

Even as I have been composing this message, I have had incoming e-mail messages to finalize the next rehearsal of Lunar Glare (this Friday) for which I will need to ‘finish’ my clarinet part (in the sense of adding the needed cues). And if I can practice, well, that won’t be a bad thing, either, at all, at all. That piece we will play on 12 May.

It turns out that Heinrich Christensen at King’s Chapel will be out of town that week, so he cannot accompany me for a cl/org program on 18 May. I am still considering Plan B. Strike that: As soon as I typed the phrase Plan B, I realized I have been meaning to call Peter Bloom to check his availability for that Tuesday . . . and I suddenly had enough with the “meaning to.” I called; Peter is in.

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