First Hearing

The first time I hear a new work of mine in rehearsal is both exciting and frightening. I’m never worried that the musicians who are playing or singing my work aren’t up to the task, I’m more frightened that I’ve made serious miscalculations and will need to scrap the whole project and start from scratch. Fortunately, the excitement of the moment often carries me through those moments of doubt.

I had the great pleasure of hearing the Luther College Symphony play through O Nobilissima yesterday, and I’m happy to say that the piece is coming right along and is already sounding close to the aural image I’ve had in mind for this piece. The piece clocked in around 12.5 minutes, which is a little on the long side due to some slower tempi, but right in the ballpark. There were some beautiful solo moments from many of the players, and a very powerful and resonant chorale section ends work. A recording of the final 2.5 minutes is below. If today is any indication, this work will continue to grow and bloom in the next few weeks and then again in January, when the group travels to Vienna for a residency.

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