Drawing a Blank, part 2

In an earlier post (Drawing a Blank) I mentioned the terror of the blank page, as one begins a new project. Well, I’m about to start, and so I’m working my way through and around that blank page (well, blank screen really, since I use the music notation program Finale). My son Jeremy and his fiancee Amanda are getting married in mid-August; they’ve asked me to write something to be played during the ceremony.

Jeremy and I talked about that tonight. It’ll probably be no more than two minutes; played on piano. I asked about other service music: Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring for the bride; Beethoven’s Ode to Joy for the happy couple as they leave. Anyone for a little joy?

So I’ve started my precompositional planning. I need to decide on a style, develop a motivic idea or two (my wife Marianne suggested tossing in reference to a tune Jeremy sang when he was a kid–maybe…), and get some notes written. Not tonight, ’cause I’d like to get some sleep sometime and the last thing I need is to have the piece running through my brain. But it’ll be working in the background anyway. Joy. Piano. Two minutes: barely enough time to get started; an eternity to complete. I’ll let you know how it works out…

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