Guys! I’m back. (Or at least I hope I’m back?) I know my infamous blog has been sadly neglected, but I’ve decided I’m going to post something once a week during the academic semester.
Therefore, you can now (hopefully) look forward to fifteen weeks of rejections, cocktails, acceptances, and cats on occasion.
[In other news: I will be with the Ohio University Wind Symphony this weekend when they record Lichtweg/Lightway. I can’t wait. Also, my short piano response to Scriabin’s Op. 8 No. 1 étude (“Recomposed Scriabin”) is now available for download and purchase. Enjoy!]
But I like writing for the horn. 😢
This rejection is from a few months ago, and ironically I kind of wonder if I should be posting it because I just submitted a new application. Oh well.
I knew I was receiving this rejection letter because they hadn’t asked me to fly out to New York City and meet them, so ultimately I decided to fly myself out to Washington D.C. instead for a performance. Totally worth it.
Wait, what is this you ask? A GUEST composer fail! (I mean, I’m assuming I’m not the only one receiving these, right? RIGHT?)
Ahem. Anyway, this guest composer FAIL was written by my dear friend Jamie Leigh Sampson. (Editorial comments will be employed by gifs only.) Enjoy!
Mr. Julius, don’t be sad: rejections happen.
Greetings from Interlochen! I have just wrapped up Week 1 teaching young composers, going to fabulous concerts, and…experiencing the joys of cafeteria food when I can’t make it to Traverse City. Alas.
Now that I have some semblance of internet in my rustic cabin (oh man, should I post pictures online?), I can now post rejection letters that have been sitting in my inbox since…December 28, 2016.
But HEY, congrats to Katherine Balch for winning this residency. (Just saying, women write music too.)
In other good news, I will be recording a podcast interview this week with Anthony Joseph Lanman of the 1 Track Podcast. Should be fun!
Last week I did a thing (or more like the Quince Contemporary Vocal Ensemble did a thing): I/they recorded Prisoner of Conscience.
(Goodness, I think I was wearing the same shirt as Liz Lemon.)
Here are some photos. Enjoy!
Dan adjusting the mics.
Quince recording the text in between while the others wait in the booth.
Yes, this is a staged shot.
I kind of miss these headphones.
For the record, this is Carrie’s jar of peanut butter.
They made me do it! They made me do it! (Yes, I have a cameo on this album.)
Miss you Quince Ladies.
Before I revive my second composer FAIL, I’d like to share with you a podcast I recently recorded with my good friends Andrew Martin Smith and host Rob McClure on ADJ•ective New Music’s podcast Lexical Tones entitled “Over Drinks – Saariaho.”
Get it? Drinks? Cocktails? DO YOU SEE WHAT I DID THERE???
But seriously, once upon a time I saw approximately 5-10 minutes of Kaija Saariaho’s L’amour de Loin and hated it. Why? The plot was was this: boy pines girl, girl pines boy, boy gets on a boat to actually meet girl he’s pining over, HE DIES, THE END.
What can I say, the synopsis sucks.
However, I did have a change of heart and you should listen to it.
If you guys ask for more composer FAILs, you will receive more composer FAILs.
I don’t remember what I submitted, but that’s okay: I actually have a few performances this week. (If only I could chat with my twenty-year-old self and tell her that everything will work out okay, I would…)
Austin, I am coming at you!
Guys, I swear I do other things than post rejection letters online and have composer cocktails to make up for it. Sometimes I have performances in which a certain Paula Deen uses every kitchen tactic to take some angels down with her.
Here are some photos from Opera MODO’s production of J.S. Bach’s Coffee Cantata along with other works (including my Krispy Kremes and Butter Queens opera) designed to go with the Detroit Institute of Art’s Coffee, Tea and Chocolate exhibition.
Photos by Bruno Vanzieleghem. With Katrina Van Maanen, Constantine Novotny, and Danielle M Wright and the major players.
Guys. GUYS. I have made it. I have finally accomplished the milestone of achieving one hundred (documented) Composer FAILs, and now I’m wondering what to do with my life.
First off, I should probably make a speech.
I would like to say this. Failure is not something you can do on your own. Many, many people contributed to my failures. I would like to thank my parents for not completely comprehending why or how I’m a composer or why I post my rejection letters online, the multiple gatekeepers who took a chance on an unknown composer, and last but not least, the wonderful crews from Blogger (then Medium, and now WordPress) who spend hours coding and creating an easy-to-use platform without which I might never be able to curate my rejections.
Yes, #100 is a double-rejection!
So, cheers everyone. I will be celebrating my rejection letters in style, since it took me seven years to accumulate every single one of them.
Composer FAILs—going strong since 2010.