Tag Archives: Practice

String quartet practice yields inspiration, and better recordings too!

We had initially planned on practicing a month ago, but it was hard to get our schedules to match up and we finally met up last night. I had added a new ending to the fourth and final movement “Fast and Furious”, which we tried out. Several of us had not been playing very much for several weeks, and I was a little worried about how it would go. But I was very happy with our rehearsal, and I think we might be able to record it in the next few months.

As usual, playing music I write is often a springboard for more inspiration to write, and I decided last night to start on another string quartet. I mean, I’ve got to keep writing to improve my craft, and a string quartet is a lot less demanding to get performed than an entire symphony.

So today I opened up my laptop to actually do something else, but the last thing I had opened was my first string quartet, and I decided to just go for it. I had spent some time today just relaxing and trying to figure out what I was going to write, but hadn’t really gotten any strokes of inspiration. From experience, I know that it seldom comes that way anyway, so I wasn’t too worried.

I made a “New score”, selected the instrumentation, made choice of tempo and key signature (atonal for simplicity), and called it simply “String Quartet #2” and then I had this one idea. Just a small gesture. And as you know, a small gesture is often all it takes for a piece to get started. Now I have three phrases, and I have started. That is a good feeling, because often the first step can be daunting.

Symphony sounds

My nephew Joschija Oelkrug also writes music, and he helped me get a better sound recording of my symphony. I listened to the new audio files this morning, and though I have been through some discouragement the past few months, I realized that I was quite pleased with how that symphony turned out, and I really hope that it gets played before too long. I will upload the new files here in another post in the next few days so you can all hear it with the better sound. I especially loved the way the piccolo and flute sound in it. Not to mention the clarinets. So much better.