15 October 2017

The Never-Happened. The Steady, Reliable Support. And, Towards the Future.

[ from the archive — 15.x.2012]
Not much in the way of news . . .  have I mentioned that the First Church Choir are singing a concert in January, and that at least two bits of Henningmusick will feature on the program? Love Is the Spirit and the Alleluia in D . . . possibly also the Kyrie.
The long-awaited recording of Angular Whimsies may actually be sent to me before year’s end.  Or not.  We shall see.
No news on the flute solo piece which I submitted for the call.  The flutist has posted an apologetic advisory that she will be in touch, eventually.
A tantalizing e-mail message has come in from my old trumpet ace schoolmate;  The Angel Who Bears a Flaming Sword has not been forgotten . . . .
Or, perhaps it has been.

To poetify one aspect of my regular experience:  The path forward for many artists is paved in part with the rubble of past hopes.  Of all the What may happen in the future items of five years ago today, the only element to reach fruition was the performance of Love Is the Spirit on the January 2013 concert.

Does that sound like a complaint?  It is none, for I am deeply grateful for a fine performance of Love Is the Spirit by the wonderful First Church Choir, who have adopted the motet as one of their signature pieces.

Pictured below is the spire of the Sixth Meeting House of the First Congregational Church in Woburn, the site of the creation of many earlier works in the Henning catalogue.  It was arguably journeyman work—but it gave me the opportunity to practice composition regularly.  Its “importance” is not so much the music which I wrote (much of which is modest in scope and intent), as in the invaluable workshop for an extended period.  This has wound up being yet another occasion to express gratitude to the late William A. Goodwin for years of belief in my work, and sustained material and moral support:  because I cannot say that I could have written my recent Symphony, now, without the artistic preparation which Bill made possible.

Looking to April 2018—two years ago at about this time (the PDF of the last score is dated 18.x.2015) I had begun composing a two-singer scene from The Scottish play.  The occasion for which I was speculating the piece (it occupied the since-repurposed Opus number 138) was a potential concert which either changed, or got canceled entirely.  I may at some point finish the piece in that guise, but I want to embark on another setting of that scene, for two female singers, three winds and fixed media.  Musically, entirely a different tackwhich will indeed mean that, should opportunity arise in future to resuscitate the “Old Op.138,” it will keep.  The new scena will run quite a bit cooler than the Op.129, whose première was so stunningly created by Barbara Hill Meyers, one of the singers for the Op.147 to come.

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