Friday, February 21, 2014

Week Forty Three Project

Struggle struggle struggle.  That's what this week's project was like.  Apart from writers block, I've been dealing with technical issues and frustrations.   But this is a warts and all project, so I'm putting Week Forty Three up regardless!  This is a very dense piece, and by that I mean that there's a lot going on in the mid-range frequencies.  This is intentional, but I would actually like to work on having all these instruments and sounds sitting next to each other a little better.  In addition to composing, I'm obviously recording and mixing these pieces myself, and even after week Forty Three I sometimes feel like I'm still only at the start of a pretty huge learning curve.  I'm not sure about how I feel about this week's project.  I often need to take a few days to allow my pieces to sink in and make a decision on whether I like them or not.

So here it is:

I think I may have mentioned that I volunteer a couple of days a week at the Seattle Opera, and as a result I get free tickets to their dress rehearsals, so this week I was fortunate enough to see their production of Menotti's "The Consul".  The only other 'modern' opera I've seen is "Tomorrow, In A Year" by The Knife, so I was really excited to see what The Consul was like (especially as it won a Pulitzer Prize for music), and I was not disappointed.  I like opera, but usually glaze over when people try to explain why the stories of Rigoletto and The Magic Flute are relevant today.  In fact, I really don't care about the stories.  I unashamedly go for the music.  However The Consul was different.  I loved the score, which I found very accessible (and reminded me a little of golden era Hollywood film scores), but I found the story itself to be gripping and more than relevant today.  It was particularly poignant to me considering Australia's current political climate which is sadly and incomprehensibly hostile to refugees.  Whoever knew that a 3 hour opera about applying for a visa could be so compelling?!

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