September 26, 2009
Corn is as High as an Elephant’s…
I’m leaving early on Monday for my first trip of the school year. First stop: The University of Oklahoma. The band there is playing “Asphalt Cocktail” on October 1 (my birthday), and although I can’t be there for their performance, I’ll be there for their rehearsal on Monday.
Why can’t I be there for the performance? Because on Tuesday, I head from the University of Oklahoma to Oklahoma State. Is that a big rivalry? A few years ago, I had back-to-back visits at Ohio State and The University of Michigan. I made a point not to mention either school to the other. I should probably do the same next week. I’ll be at Oklahoma State — where they’re performing both Asphalt Cocktail and Aurora Awakes — until early on October 2. Their performance (along with 4 others, weirdly enough) is also on October 1. It seems like I’m traveling almost every year on my birthday.
I’m excited to hear OSU’s performance of Aurora Awakes, as I haven’t heard it since its premiere in May, and this will be the first time I’ll hear it with a college group. (There will be others. The piece has roughly 30 performances scheduled during this year, and those were programmed almost entirely from people listening to the MIDI file. I hope that when I post a recording of actual humans, all of those bands don’t abruptly cancel their performances because they decide that, yeah, it probably works better as computer music.)
A few days ago, I sent the first two movements of the Trombone Concerto to Joe Alessi. He said he’d have some free time starting in about a week, and he wanted to spend it learning his solo part, so I gave him the draft. If you’re curious to see the first two movements of the solo part, here is the PDF. On its own, without any of the accompaniment, the second “movement” is especially bare. (It starts at m. 302. It’s all about harmony and length of line, but without chords, about the only thing you’ll get if you play through it is the challenge of making measures 376-381 not sound like… well, ass.) I sent Joe the full score and the MIDI, but I’m not going to post those here. The next time anybody else hears this piece, it’ll be with Joe Alessi, and an ensemble of actual musicians.
Well, unless he also decides that the piece works better as computer music…