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Topic #99: If I Could Write a Symphony…

April 14, 2011

Topic #99:

Have you ever considered writing a book? If so what would it be about? Make a list of the ideas you want to cover, or the themes it might have.  If you’ve never considered writing a book, what other major work have you thought about (a movie? a symphony?). Write a paragraph or two about what you imagine it would be like.

Thanks to PindSha21 at the creative Inside My Head blog for the suggestion.

I have thought about writing a book but it’s not really my forte.  A symphony would be AMAZING.  I know there are a LOT of things that go into creating a symphony, which includes an understanding the nature of each family of instruments, how to write the music down, etc.  I know it’s possible to write music without having an understanding of these various instruments, but I imagine that this piece of knowledge will only help the composer create what can be heard in his/her head.

I do dabble a lot in writing music.  The one thing I lack is the skill to write out a score, but I do know that I could if I practiced more often.  The ability to write out music on a score is an art in itself.

I imagine the work would be a lovely combination of a full chorale, a symphony as well as a jazz combo with a section to allow improvisation.  If I could take the epic nature of John Williams’ work and the brilliancy of Shamie Royston’s historical dissertation along with the complexity and colors of Maria Schneider’s big band scores, the work would be beyond my imagination.  I love the profound awe produced by Copland’s “Fanfare for the Common Man” and the striking first chord of “O Fortuna” from Orff’s “Carmina Burana”.  I LOVE the fire of Beethoven and the complexity of J.S. Bach.  Taking all of these pieces and having the influence of the pop music that has infused my life: Stevie Wonder, Prince, Queensryche, U2, Sara Bareilles, Eva Cassidy, Alicia Keys…the music would be a whirlwind.  The big band era with Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Benny Goodman and the trifecta of timeless divas:  Billie, Sarah & Ella…my work would have homages to these inspiring people and works.

I think I may start sketching my main theme.  Gotta go….

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