new year, new piano
Last Saturday was the first Aus Ensemble subs concert for 2009 and the new — MY new — Steinway flew in the day before, arriving at the venue at 6 for a first Southern hemisphere tune by Ara. And it’s a beauty. Chosen by the mysterious Mr Fründ in Hamburg, it has a lovely golden tone and a capacity for very soft and, well, adequately loud. I hesitate to say very loud for fear of alarming my flute- and violin-playing colleagues but some of those chords in the Brahms horn trio were rippers and my pinky could be heard solo-ing above the racket. So I’m a happy camper.
Yes, I have spared more than one thought for my friend Wayne S, whose piano we are retiring to make way for this one. At least one subscriber has interrogated poor Ursula over why we are ‘abandoning’ Albert, our trusty servant of ten years. Well, it’s sad, but we have made a collective choice and are happy with that. At least, we have probably played more concerts on a Stuart than any other group and have given the piano an excellent showcase on the ABC. Wayne, meanwhile, continues to make superlative instruments of great character and individuality.
As for my composing… Hmm. Slow, slow, slow. I think I must be a bit retarded sometimes, the way my mind struggles along. At least the song cycle Letter to a Friend is finished in its short form (three of the original six poems) but I’d like to make better progress with the rest. The ACO piece is done, which wasn’t such a stress cos it’s a version of the song ‘Black is the Night’. Already two weeks behind schedule with the divertimento for the MCO. Help!
I’m glad we were able to join in and do a benefit for the Vics who were ravaged by the bushfires. It was so wonderful to have so many of our colleagues at Clancy to play with us and I want to thank all of them for their generosity and collegiality. Cheers, everyone.