I'm back after a bit of a break. The completion of my bagpipe concerto took longer than I thought… I finally finished it on Tuesday morning at 3am! The writing was finshed at 4pm but when I reconvened at 10.30pm – after starting the new Harry Potter book – to write in the piano chord names it took me about 3 hours and then a further 90 minutes to input them to the computer. I'm very happy with the end product.
The rehearsal went very well yesterday (another one today). I spent time on the dynamics, tempo markings etc to make the individual instrument parts readable and playable quickly with not too much complication. Simon McKerrell did very well at his first reading ofthe parts. He is playing a D chanter but I have written in C, Cminor, D, C#minor which is very testing. We'll have to think about the tuning of the chanter to keep it consistent throughout the performance.
The perfomance is on the 9th August at 5pm in the National Piping Centre, Glasgow.
Anyway here are some facts I compiled about the piece:
• World Premiere on 9th August, 2007 (5pm), National Piping Centre, Piping Live Festival, Glasgow
• First ever Scottish Smallpipe concerto (probably even bagpipe but I can't substantiate this)
• Commissioned by Garvie Bagpipes
• Utilises Garvie Bagpipe’s unique fully chromatic chanter
• Written for a traditional music ensemble where the instrument is most at home
• Written to show off the virtuostic capabilities of the instrument and to expand the Scottish Smallpipe repertoire.
On another note, we've notified the Hall of Fame inductees and they're all very happy to join the Hall. I'll talk more of this in my next blog. I've now got to get back to work and concentrate on everything else including starting my fiddle concerto…