Monday, January 14, 2002

I had my first lesson of the semester today and it went pretty well. I tend to compose chronologically: adding rough material on the end, while sculpting the material just previous to it to my satisfaction. Once new material survives long enough to be about thirty seconds from the end of the old material, there's a good chance that it's there to stay. My lessons work well in tandem with this approach, because Dr. Wingate gives good observations on the old material while helping to shape the roughness on the end. This approach makes successive lessons into a gradual refining process of my work, and gives me a clarified focus for the week following the lesson.

With my first undergraduate professor, I never looked forward to lessons. It got to the point where I'd finish works before the next lesson, just so I could say it was finished and not have to worry about incessant note-changing. It's probably one of the reasons I was so prolific as an undergrad. By the time I switched professors, I'd gotten into the habit, so lessons were usually a presentation of what I'd done, rather than a collaboration of what I was doing.

Man fainted, will be okay. Dogs watched. (from the "It's a slow day for news in Afghanistan" files)

"What can you do with it? It's like a lot of yaks jumping about." - Sir Thomas Beecham, on the third movement of Beethoven's Seventh

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