...I'm doing all sorts of gigs! This is the stage at DROM, shortly before we started our soundcheck. Though it's hard to make out the details off the cellphone picture, you can definitely get a sense that this is not your usual "classical" concert. The computers you see will be part of the music; not pictured are the electric guitar, bari sax, and boxing gloves. At least I didn't have to sing into the mic this time! (My last gig at DROM also happened to be my solo vocal debut.)
Today I fired off an email to composer Somei Satoh, whose music will be the topic of my dissertation.
I have to admit that I feel quite self-conscious about communicating with my doctoral topic. I intend to present Satoh's works as an intersection of the Western and Japanese musical traditions, and I'm pretty sure that the evidence is in his music. But I haven't yet heard his opinion on this idea! He may be fully in support of it--or he might find the idea ridiculous.
Composers are unpredictable when it comes to their music. Some composers, like Elgar, were very relaxed when it came to their music. (Menuhin told a story about preparing a new work by Elgar for its premiere. In the middle of a run-through for the composer, Elgar stopped Menuhin and said something along the lines of "You sound great. It's a beautiful day--I'm going to the races!") Others, like Stravinsky, pulled out their hair when musicians "interpreted" their music. When working with a living composer, I never know which type I'm going to get. (My favorite composers are the ones who leave a small--yet significant!--footprint in my interpretation.)
At least when one is writing about Beethoven, one can be certain that the composer won't come running up with a wagging finger! I hope that Satoh-san will be open to my ideas about his music. Fingers crossed!
(Wouldn't it be ironic if Satoh read this post?
This is my second attempt at a blog. The old one fizzled out a few years ago, probably because I tried to make every entry deep, meaningful, thought-provoking, insightful--everything this one won't be, right?!
Actually, the reason I decided to start this back up is a TV show (well, pilot): Mozart in the Jungle. The show is about classical music, but with a greater emphasis on sex and drugs than has typically been displayed. I found it intriguing, and perhaps 80% realistic. But that got me thinking: does anybody know what musicians actually do for a living?
I can't speak for everybody, but I can show you my life. Sanitized and presenting me in the best light, of course.
In all seriousness, I'm hoping to share with you a slice of life as a musician. I won't be posting a practice log, but I may post about rehearsals, teaching, the backstage experience, dissertation work, pieces I'm working on--and maybe even something on practicing!
Basically, I'm lowering the bar. But I'll try to keep things interesting. And going. To facilitate the latter, I'm not even going to go back and read what I wrote. Readysetpost!