Okay, it has been a long time. I have been back home for many months. Things are going apace. This post is to let you know that the first tangible manifestation from my time in Japan is about to be presented to the public.
Soon after I returned home, Dr. Raymond David Burkhart, director of the College of the Canyons Symphonic Band, in Santa Clarita, asked if I would consider being Artist-In-Residence for their 2013 −2014 season. I agreed. Since then, I have been working on two pieces, "Haebaru Field Hospital - Pappy Don't Drink That Milk" and "Fishin' Dem Bones - Northernmost Point 45º31'N." The former is a concertino for cimbasso and mixed winds. It is complicated, long and unfinished. "Fishin' Dem Bones," on the other hand, is ready for prime time.
"Fishin’ Dem Bones," is based on the African American spiritual, "Dem Bones Gonna Rise Again," and the Hokkaido fishing song, "Soran Bashi." "45º31'N," is the coordinate for Soya Misaki, Wakkanai, in Hokkaido, Japan’s most northern point. (That is as of this writing; things change there all the time.)
It will be performed on Monday, Dec. 2, 2013, on the band's themed concert "Four Centuries of Music for Band" in the Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook University Center lobby. Admission is free and open to the public.
So there you have it. Things happen, life progresses.
"Fishin' Dem Bones," is a graphic score. I may eventually post the whole score, but I'm not ready for that yet. For now, I'll just post the title page. Also, I bought a traditional Japanese clothing while I was there. Not overly easy for a guy my size. I've had a few opportunities to wear some of them. In the first photo, I am wearing some tobi pants in the performance of "My Moby Dick," put on by the Library Foundation of Los Angeles. I was performing songs with Garretson and Gorodetsky. Tobi pants, or steeplejacks in other cultures, are hip. That's all I have to say on that. In the next photo I am performing part of Greg Lenczycki's "You Are Not Alone," in Pasadena's Upper Arroyo Park. I am wearing a casual kimono top, hakama trousers and tabi shoes. The Japanese in the shops didn't understand why I wanted to buy that stuff, but I knew I'd find some uses for it. There is always a stage for stylish clothes.
|Ralph Gorodetsky, yours truly, Weba Garretson, Joe Berardi|
|Performing the solo portion of Greg Lenczycki's "You Are Not Alone."|
|Poster for the upcoming performance.|
|Title page for the new piece.|