March 31, 2015
Kiev in 100 Easy Steps (continued!)
Let me catch you up on the new Naxos CD of my orchestral works. Everything is now edited, and all the pieces but the Violin Concerto are now finished and ready for the CD. We are down to ten tiny issues in the Concerto and I hope one more week will see the editing finished.
That means it’s time for another installment of Kiev in 100 Easy Steps! So, without further ado, Track 5, please.
- 5) Become a follower of Jesus Christ. I know; this one should have been first, but that’s precisely why you need to do this. You won’t be plagued with bad memories of what you forgot to do, because, after all, He died to take away anything that separates you from Himself or from other people – a good thought for Holy Week. But, more importantly, you will have a sense that what you do has eternal weight and purpose far beyond what might become of your big projects here on earth.
- 6) Prepare absolutely the best, clearest, and most readable score you possibly can for each piece. After all, it’s for eternity (see #5, above), and it is a good way to love your conductor, even if he is not to enter the picture for 40 years after you finish that first piece!
- 7) Prepare absolutely the best, clearest, and most readable parts you possibly can for each piece. This is your way to love all of your musicians. Give them the very best road map that you can, with well-marked, frequent cues and long rests at page turns (if, indeed, you must have page turns). Try to show them the terrain and topography of your piece as much as possible, not just the roads they must drive; after all, that’s what a good road map does.
- 8) A refrain I constantly utter to my students: Back It Up! Not just your Finale, Sibelius, or other computer files onto three or four hard drives, but also high-quality PDF’s there as well. And not just your computer files, but even your manuscripts! It’s so easy to convert those to PDF’s and helps to make those much more accessible to more people later. It’s a bad joke, but I tell my students and myself to imitate Jesus Christ – save often!
I wish for you all, dear readers, a marvelous celebration of Easter. Please do not be afraid to take the plunge downward into the passion of our Lord; go ahead and attend a Maundy Thursday and a Good Friday service this week, so you will be even more prepared for the fantastic festival of next Sunday!