Monday, March 31, 2014

composer FAIL #77

Ah, it has been a while, hasn't it? I actually have three (I think?) more rejection letters in my inbox, and I thought maybe I should attend to those. In the meantime I did enjoy a fantastic trip to Texas (more on that later!) where Spielzeug Straßenbahn was finally premiered, and I wrapped up a piece for Miller Asbill and Brevard College, so that piece will also finally happen! (We've discussed it for over a year.)

Anyway, the rejection letter awaits.

Monday, February 17, 2014

composer FAIL #76

As you have probably noticed, I am back to my old practice of posting pictures of cats as part of my "composer FAIL" series, mainly because (1) my feline at home has consistently planted herself on my lackluster sketches and (2) how can you resist posting a picture of Henry Cowell with his furry companion? (Hat tip to Christian Hertzog for directing me to this gem.)

So, dear Lindsay Cat, if you are going to be so helpful, could you please tell me how to successfully incorporate saxophones in a wind ensemble piece? Dear Stravinsky, why has the saxophone "reminded [you] of a slimy, pink worm"? You are not helpful either.

I digress.

Am I going to attend anyway? No, I don't want to miss this concert series.

Monday, February 10, 2014

composer FAIL #75

The Presidential Palace
So…this isn't the fourth rejection letter I received while in Vietnam. I thought it was because I saw this heading…

…and then I actually read the contents of the email.

At this rate I can't remember which competitions I've applied to, which are still out there, and which I have not applied to. But don't worry, I still have a rejection letter I can post.

Someday my choral piece will be performed again? Maybe?

Monday, February 3, 2014

cadillacs for microphones: the I-75

Two weekends ago I had the wonderful opportunity to cancel classes to sit on a panel and give my composer/impresario expertise and have a couple of my pieces performed. Great weekend? Or greatest weekend?


2:58 p.m.

Rafael de Acha, teacher/moderator at the University of Cincinnati Osher Lifelong Learning Institute asked me and James Slouffman (President of the Cincinnati Wagner Society) and Kathleen Doane (Arts Writer Lecturer at the University of Cincinnati's English Department) to participate on a panel entitled "Teaching the Arts." Are we building a future audience? Are we nurturing a future crop of artists? Is art education needed and how do we provide that in the current educational system?

I'm glad I had the opportunity to participate in this discussion. One of the questions Rafael asked me is how I can convince people to listen to new concert music. I said, "My first goal is to convince all of you that composers are living and breathing beings and that we exist among you and that we're real people too!"

(I try.)

Monday, January 27, 2014

composer FAIL #74

I'm posting this for two reasons: (1) I'm tired of this rejection letter sitting in my bloated inbox and (2) I just drove on the I-75 from Toledo to Cincinnati in some nasty driving conditions, and I don't feel like driving for two more hours up the I-71 right now.

Because seriously, who on earth did you offend, Northwest Ohio?! During half of my drive I wanted to curl up into a ball and start sobbing.

Part 3 of 4

I guess I'm applying again in two years. Sigh.

In other news:

Of course almost a thousand composers submitted stuff for the MATA festival. I have a feeling another rejection letter is coming soon. (Pictures or it didn't happen, MATA.)

Friday, January 24, 2014

spoiler alert, unless you rubberneck

Part of me wanted to keep the genesis and construction of my newest fixed-format piece "Bifocals" a secret. It hasn't premiered yet (but it will today!), and there is a surprise embedded in the piece, so I thought, why spoil it?

Well, either I have a hard time keeping my mouth shut or I have a hard time inventing new material for my blog. Either way, if you are going to tonight's event, FOR THE LOVE OF EVERYTHING HOLY PLEASE PUT THE BLOG DOWN AND STOP READING.

But, for those who rubberneck, keep gawking.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

composer FAIL #73

Correction: I received four rejection letters during my Vietnam trip. Apparently one of them got lost in the oodles of email that flooded my inbox while I was gone.

Part 2 of 4

Unfortunately I don't remember what I submitted. Congrats to Lansing McLoskey!


Hey guys, I'll be getting to know the Ohio section of the I-75 this weekend! If you're in the Cincinnati/Toledo/Bowling Green area, please stop by and say hi. My schedule is below.

Monday, January 20, 2014

cadillacs for microphones: brevard

I'm fully convinced now that I'm not the best at blogging: I should be diligent and consistent with posts and, I don't know, write posts with actual content so that my readers ooh and ahh over my insightful musings. I should also write about my trips as soon as they happen and not wait three months later to write about a wonderful trip to Brevard when everyone is now wondering how my trip to Vietnam went.

It went well, thank you. I'm surprised I wasn't terribly jet lagged.

So…Brevard! I visited in late October/early November to finally meet Miller Asbill and visit the school I'm writing a wind ensemble piece for.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

composer FAIL #72

Ho Chi Minh once said, "If you are a capitalist, I will attack you with the North."

Okay, maybe Uncle Ho never uttered those words, but I did receive three rejection letters while I was abroad (including one on my birthday).

Thursday, December 19, 2013

The Five-Year Blog Anniversary

If there is any excuse to post a picture of cupcakes, I'll do it.

GUYS, guess what: my blog has been in existence for five years. I'm actually surprised I've kept it up this long, considering that most blogs collect dust and retire to that Island of Misfit Blogs. (I'm sure they're loved by someone, somewhere, possibly by spam robots.)

Theoretically a five-year blog anniversary should be safe enough to celebrate, except that I misremembered its birthday. Ideally you should have been reading this particular post in November, but my typical blogger failings (not posting frequently, not posting consistently, forgetting blog birthdays, et cetera) prevented me from posting this earlier.

Initially some embarrassing posts went up, maybe because they were infantile rants of why I hated inventing titles (such an angsty grad student post, if you ask me), how I pulled a muscle in my back (because my grad-student self worked in bed), and how much I hate FedEx Office (I still hate them). And then a month afterward I had this bright idea of posting my rejection letters online.

I know what you're thinking. "If these posts are so embarrassing, why are you reposting them?"