Sunday, September 26, 2010

LDS composers' concert

I just recently performed this past weekend on the horn. I love performing. I love the rush that I get. I love having people listen to what I've prepared. I don't love, however, the anxiety and nervousness that comes from it. I could sure do without that.

A friend of mine provided me with the unique opportunity to be the featured horn player of this concert. He is from Australia, is a composer, and first heard me play my horn at my own composition recital in February 2010. He has created what is called the LDS Composers' Trust. He has started gathering music from composers of the LDS faith and has set up concerts to be performed of this music. The composers ranged anywhere from seasoned composers who have made a name for themselves to those just beginning and studying composition. Being handed the opportunity to play some of these pieces has been a joy for me.

There were two performances that happened on Sept. 23 and 24. I had a blast performing in each one. I played three pieces and each one was very different in style. 

The first was a piece that took me way out of my comfort zone. When I say way out there, I mean way, way, way, way, waaaaaaay out there. It not only required me to play, but to act, as well. I was to convince people that I was chewing gum before starting the piece. Then, I had to place the gum in mouth so that I could play with it in there. Half way through the piece, the gum gets stuck. Then begins the long process of getting the gum out. So, here I am on stage, blowing through my horn, hitting and banging it, twisting and turning it, trying to get it out, when finally, it comes out the end of the horn. I pick it up, replace it in my mouth and then finish the piece. Fun little piece. I think I pulled it off alright, considering all my acting skills.

The second was a piece by one of my professors, Christian Asplund. I loved this piece. It was aesthetically different than what most people are used to, but nonetheless, very, very beautiful. This turned out being the premiere of this work. It had been lined up to be played several times in the past, but never got performed due to many setbacks. I'd definitely play this piece again. It was hard but a lot of fun.

Then, the last piece was a funky version of a children's song. It was fast paced, exciting and overall, just a fun piece. It was only too bad that we didn't have as much rehearsal time as we wish we would have had. The performances went well and were well received by the audience.

I love music so much. I never thought that I could be involved with music for the rest of my life. For a long time, I always thought that I would have to move onto something else eventually. It was always a little sad to think about because of how much I love music. I hope that more opportunities keep coming my way so that music can continue to be the main part of my life.

Monday, September 13, 2010

drumroll, please...

It has been seven months since my senior composition recital and I made a promise that I would post the recordings of my music. Well, it wasn't possible for me to post my music on blogger because it either isn't possible, or I'm just too stupid to figure it out. Well, without further ado, I present to you...

Here you can catch all the updates on my musical life including performances of my pieces, premieres and any other concerts and what not I may be participating in. I hope that you all get a chance to check it out. It's not super impressive (yet!), but I'm going to keep working on it and hopefully I'll turn it into something amazing and awesome.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Barlow Endowment Day 3

I couldn't believe the last day arrived so quickly! On this final day, we all gathered together one last time to pick out our recipients of the general and lds commissions. The best part was that multiple winners could be chosen. That was also the worst part because we wanted them all to get something.

The process of elimination happened just like the day before for the prize. However, when we came down to a few, they were the recipients! No further weeding needed to happen. However, another factor was thrown into the equation. The Barlow Endowment only had so much money for these commissions. So, the judges began the process of 'who really deserves how much?'. It was interesting to see as some asking prices were left untouched and others were slashed significantly. By midday, the commissions were negotiated and everything calculated and was in harmony with what the Barlow was willing to award.

I had so much fun with this internship. It has been a remarkable opportunity for me. I learned so many valuable things in just 3 days and gained some new friendships. I'm all fired up to be a composer, especially after hearing what the winners were writing. I wanted to be one of them. I wanted to feel like I was being rewarded for my talent. Of course, I always feel rewarded by my talents, but it's also nice when the world recognizes these talents.

Sometimes, I think I'm crazy for pursuing a career in music. I wonder everyday about how I will support myself and my future family. One thing I do know is that I am definitely doing what I love. I have no regrets about doing it. There is nothing that a little hard work won't do for you. All of my hard work has been rewarded. If I do all I'm supposed to and put the rest into my Heavenly Father's hands, I know that He will take care of me. I love music. There is nothing that I would rather be doing.