Even though I have not been composing during the holidays, I have been busy preparing scores for posting at my website and at sibeliusmusic.com. For the 7 1/2 years that I have been retired from teaching, I have been gradually working on getting examples of all my music posted in both places. For each piece, I create a file that can be seen and heard simultaneously using the free Scorch player from Sibelius. I also create mp3 excerpts and a graphic of the first page of the score. I have been a Sibelius user for about 8 years, ever since they came out with a version for MAC. Prior to that, I used Finale since around the mid 1980's. Therefore, out of my over 250 compositions arrangements, over half need to be converted to Sibelius files. The ones in Finale come over fairly easily, but need a lot of formatting to look correct. The works that were in manuscript need to be entered into Sibelius. This takes a lot of time. Then I need to create all the files and post them in the two places.
At the end of the year, I usually update my composition records. It had been two years since my last update, and it was interesting to see what I accomplished. During the two year period, I wrote around 15 new compositions, transcribed 3 works that were in manuscript, converted around 35 works that were in Finale, and posted around 40 works to my website and sibeliusmusic.com. If you would like to see how my website functions, go to http://www.cooppress.hostrack.net
I think there is no better way to find new music than to see and hear the music in the convenience of your own home. I remember the hours I used to spend in the music store looking for new music and often guessing whether it would sound right for my needs. The internet certainly has changed the way we can select music.
While you are at my website, you may wish to check out my publishing company's grant programs and recording competition. Via a generous donation from a supporter and contributions from earnings from my music, we have established the Co-op Press Fund. The fund offers grants to encourage musicians to become involved in promoting the excitement of new music. The idea behind the "co-op" in Co-op Press is to find innovative ways for performers and composers to work together to create an excitement for contemporary art music and to spread the word to both audiences and other performers about the wealth of good literature that has recently or is presently being written. We really believe that both these talented musicians and composers need to be heard. As funds and time permit, our goal is to expand this program to continually create projects to achieve this goal. Our affiliate CD label, Emeritus Recordings, has two series of CDs. Our Artist Series features talented musicians playing a variety of repertoire, some older and some recent. Our Repertoire Series, focuses on recent repertoire in specific genres. A lot of my music has been recorded as a result of these projects and we are proud to be able to share the talent of these artists and composers with audiences throughout the world.
I hope that 2008 brings all my readers all the musical and personal blessings that are on your wish list. I look forward to productive year and to traveling to premieres and performances of my music. During the early part of 2008, I'll be in Lancaster, PA, Washington, DC, Cincinnati, OH, Manhattan, KA, and Iowa City, IA for performances. If you are a reader of my blog in those areas, please ask for details of my trip and stop by and say "hello".