Make way! (Day 141/365)

I didn’t think I’d get anything done today, but tonight I started on the orchestration for Make Way. I figured that of my three choices it needed the most attention. Both Marmalade Man and Tale of the Tailor sound halfway orchestrated in the playback of the piano score, so if I went ahead and tackled Make Way, then everything would sound as if I had some orchestral inkling come January 10.

Speaking of which, Marc has taken the bull by the horns and started discussion of the music and the piece as a whole over on the Lacuna blog. I don’t know that we’ll get anyone talking on the site again, yet, but it’s worth a shot.

Anyway, I got twelve measures done, which is not as much work as it might sound. The cello part was obvious, of course, but then the rest of the accompaniment? Strings in the chords? Double the melody? Where? Flute’s too low; have I overused the clarinet? Oboe’s too strident, even for the Rabbit, at least in the opening.

What I’ve ended up with is simplicity itself: the lilting downbeat quarter notes in the cello; melody in the flute and clarinet; and only the bassline of the chordal accompaniment, in the bassoon. Very spare, and I arrived at it only after putting the chordal accompaniment everywhere I could think of: low strings, oboe, horns, harp. All of it was too much, and now I’m opening what will be the most glorious waltz in the piece with a very, very restrained ensemble. Perfect.

5 thoughts on “Make way! (Day 141/365)

  1. The way of talk through your orchestration decisions is inspiring in terms of our possible production and the care and investment we bring to our creative decisions. It’s all of a piece, so to speak; very interesting…

  2. I’m too impulsive and my eyes don’t edit fast enough: I meant “the way you talk through your orchestration decisions…” How can I edit my own comments, again?

  3. I have no little e on my screen…

    Be thinking. Here’s what I get tripped up obsessing over. I think to myself, “What’s the most interesting and ‘theatrical’ way to translate the notion of an ‘Inn’ into stage or performance events?” Then I think, “Why try to be so literal and concrete, after all it’s all about what happens in the airy nothing through the work of imagination; we need see nothing Inn-ish at all…” A Robert Wilson, I think (I alas can’t not think of him; unavoidable) would throw visions up on stage that had nothing whatsoever to do with the poems. And then I think, “I don’t have to prove to anyone that I ‘get’ Robert Wilson via this work…” What I want is to move past this stumbling block. I entreat all to help me out of myself as we move forward.

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