Summer Countdown: Day 35

Productive, that’s what I was.

I established a page on this blog as a repository for permanent material related to my piece for the Ayrshire Fiddle Orchestra, and posted the two sketches I had already created, Vibes and The Labyrinth in Snow.

Then I turned around and created two new fragmentary sketches: Resignation and Rondo Mobile.

Resignation is based on the hymn tune most commonly associated with “My Shepherd Will Supply My Need.” I’ve always loved Virgil Thomson’s choral arrangement of the hymn, and in casting about for something that would come close to Wallace Galbraith’s suggestion that I write “music with its roots in your part of the world,” I was reminded of it.

It’s a gorgeous melody, and all I really need to do is voice it. But I’m going to try to gild the lily by taking it into interesting variations and harmonies. We’ll see.

The Rondo Mobile came about as I tried to come up with something that was close to the AFO’s “house style,” which is largely traditional Scottish/Celtic folk/dance music: stolid harmonies, “fiddly” arpeggiations, etc. I didn’t want to write a dance, but something more “arty” that used skills they already had. A rondo, of course, is a piece with a theme that repeatedly returns after contrasting themes, ABACADA, etc. Mine has a perpetuum mobile ‘A’ theme, and my plan is to send it off the rails, further and further each time, before returning to its simple-minded patter.

I want to do one more sketch before turning them over to Wallace for evaluation. What does everyone think about trying to arrange the third movement, the Allegro gracioso of the Symphony in G? I’d probably have to include a piano with this one to fill in some of the non-string textures, and it would be better if we could have a bass drum and tympani on the side.

Oh, and I also squeezed out two or three more drawings.

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