16 July 2013

Yesterday, in the park

This here Trumpeter has been bustling along at something of a business-like pace (the piece, I mean, not so much its composition).  So on reaching the text:
A holy calm descends like dew upon me,
I walk in cool refreshing night the walks of Paradise [....]
. . . I had a sudden sense of easing the pace, of trying my hand at some lyrical setting.  I set that part of the text yesterday morning on the train.  That is, I wrote the soprano line . . . I need to reflect on how I quite want the clarinet to accompany, there.
Yesterday, at lunch-time, I had not at all planned to leave my air-conditioned cocoon, but the fancy struck me of taking my notebook out to the park, to sit on a bench and perhaps inscribe a quaver or three.  When I got to the park, though, sounds of a flute wafted across the grass, and I thought, That sounds like my buddy Peter, doesnt it?
The really funny thing is, not only had I not planned to be in that place at that time, Peter was subbing for a violinist who had canceled.  It was a warm, and rather sticky day, but he was pacing himself for the marathon (two hours, and just he and his flute, no accompaniment).  It’s the first we had laid eyes one on another since he and Becky came to hear Annabel Lee at the Armory in Somerville; and yesterday he had warmly congratulatory words for that occasion, which I forbear to repeat for fear of appearing boastful.
He asked what I was up to, and I mentioned The Mystic Trumpeter, and also that (as I shan’t know quite how long the piece will be for a little while yet) I might need his musical assistance at King’s Chapel on 8 October; he has generously signed on.
It was only this morning that I folded the new-written soprano line into the Sibelius file, but that was well, as it got musical neurons firing.  Not only did I write out the rest of the soprano line for that stanza, but I also received inspiration for the change of musical character for the next.

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