Annuals – What year?

Now I’ve gone and confused myself (more than usual).

I posted the scores for three movements of “Annuals” today, as well as the MP3 of the fourth movement, which hasn’t been available until now. Here’s the link, if you’re interested.

I wrote “Annuals” in 2001, then orchestrated three of the movements in 2003 for the Greater Twin Cities Youth Symphony. The Seattle Youth Symphony performed it in April, and I just listened to their recording. I keep going back and forth on what to do with this piece. A large part of me really wants to rewrite it for concert band, complete with antiphonal brass, and I constantly return to that idea, wondering when I’ll do that, and for what commission it would be appropriate.

Let me backtrack… I have an idea for a piece — the piece I’m planning to write for a high school band consortium, due next March. Originally, I thought the material I was developing was going to be the piece for the SEC Conference, as that piece is due in late October, and it makes the most sense to write these pieces in order. The problem is that the material seems best-suited to the high school commission, as it’s lyrical, but not “wussy lyrical.” So, I have an idea for a piece that’s due in 9 months, but what is the piece for the SEC — which is due this fall? My first instinct is to write a percussion-driven piece for them. It’s a commission for 10 great college bands (including LSU, who gave me my early “big break”), and I want to give them a really exciting piece.

Here’s where I’m torn. When I was listening to the finale of “Annuals” a few minutes ago — in the version for orchestra — I realized that I could easily combine the materials for what I’m planning for the high school piece with the material from Annuals. The lyrical high school piece could be a prelude to a revised finale of Annuals. That would make it all part of the SEC commission, though, meaning the percussion-driven piece would have to wait, and meaning I would no longer have an idea for the high school piece. So, that’s not ideal. What’s good about it, though, is it would allow me to use the “Annuals” material that I’ve been wanting to put into a band piece, and it would let me do it without simply just re-scoring something I’ve already written. It would be considerably different.

I don’t know what to do. I could stick to my original plan and write a brand new piece — percussion-heavy — for the SEC, and a brand new piece — ballsy-lyrical — for the high school consortium, and hold off on Annuals for now. I could make “Annuals” the piece for the Japanese consortium in 2006… Whatever I decide, I need to do it soon, as the SEC is expecting a 10-minute piece in October.

I’m open to suggestions… Anyone?


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