Sunday, July 27, 2008

The Long Wait: Almost Over

If you go back through my posts about Greg's Sax Quartet, you'll probably come up with a long string of dates and delays and changes and things. The recording session for his piece was first scheduled to happen over a year ago. First, the recording engineer at Town Hall came down with Lyme Disease and was too ill to do the session. Then, tragically, he was killed in a traffic accident while riding his bicycle. Richard and the folks at Capstone Records had to find a different venue, and finally settled on a recording studio in the city.

Anyway, the expected dates are now August 4-6. Greg's is the last piece on the CD to be recorded, so everything after this is production. The New Hudsons recorded Lukas Foss's piece at his home in NYC, and they had completed everybody else's pieces before then.

Still no word as to the actual release date, but I'll keep everyone posted.

More Music News

Greg just saw an announcement yesterday for 21st Century Masterworks, Volume 15. I forget whether this was the volume his Water Suite -- the one recorded in Prague last year -- was supposed to appear on, or whether he's been placed on an earlier volume -- but no matter. It's due out shortly, and I can't wait to hear it.

The CDs from the June ACA concerts have arrived, but I haven't had a chance to listen to them yet and Greg himself has probably only had time to listen once. The New York Virtuoso Singers did a brilliant job with both pieces at the performances, and Greg mentioned that the recordings are so well miked and so well balanced that you can hear the colors of the music even better than you could sitting in the hall that night.

Thouros and Phosphoros, his cantata based on a story from Ovid's Metamorphoses, is true to its source and undergoing some metamorphosis of its own. Greg said yesterday that the more he works on the piece, the less he wants there to be solos in it. I suggested that he try soli -- having a group of voices sing the various parts of the dialogue -- and he thought he'd try that. The instrumentals are compelling, at least in the fragments of the opening parts that I've heard.

Greg's been so busy with music in Second Life that I don't really hear much about what he's been doing in First Life. The first virtual concert went off wonderfully, and I was relieved that my avatar (the emergency backup soprano) didn't have to get up and sing. Not that virtual people have stage fright, but I'd only had five minutes' worth of practice with the singing animations used to make my avatar look alive on stage.

Anyway, he was pleased with the reactions from that concert. Someone had mentioned to him that he'd had no idea that classical music in SL had attained that degree of professionalism. Greg means to get together with Joe and Tony (two of the other composers on that concert program) and put together another concert soon. He has also been considering doing a few piano concerts as soon as he can work out the logistics of playing from the Yamaha in the living room.

Classical music is still pretty much a wide-open frontier in SL. There are a few classical performers playing in-world, and a very few professional classical composers presenting their original works. The opportunities for growth and exposure in SL are still practically limitless -- and the startup costs to become an impresario in SL are infinitely lower than they are in RL. Someone had pointed out that unlike the real world, they are still making more land in SL -- so it's still possible to build your own concert venue and sponsor performances there.

Greg has had a MySpace page for ages, but is just now starting to get into using Facebook, Twitter, and other modern ways of keeping in touch. Drop by and visit his pages sometime! The MySpace page has music samples.

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