After a summer that stuck around a little too long, the weather has finally changed here. It feels like winter is not far away. This year so far has been an interesting one, with some setbacks and disappointments as well as successes and things to feel grateful for. Let me share a few updates with you.
The bad news is that I am still experiencing a whole lot of issues with my arms. Working with a physical therapist for the last few months has been great and we've tried many (MANY) things to recuperate from this injury, strengthen my body, and try to make adaptations to the way I play music and the way I use my arms in general. While it's been helpful and things are definitely moving in the right direction, there's no getting around the fact that not playing very much music (at least the way I am used to) is disheartening. The other complicating factor is that I play many instruments and everything from the ergonomics of holding the instrument to my posture to the style of music being played affects how my arms react. So I also have to approach this on an instrument-by-instrument basis, and that has added time to the overall timeline of improvement.
The good news is that I have still been doing creative work. I have continued pursuing my interest in writing, including fiction and non-fiction, and even recently wrote a song! (That doesn't happen very much these days!) Since I changed my schedule in June, I have been able to have time for recreational activities as well as classes, both of which have been good for my mental health and an outlet for expression. I'm currently enrolled in a fascinating class about Max/MSP, a visual programming language geared towards music, video and other multimedia applications. I can already see it being useful for chance-based & generative music composition, music performance, automating processes, synthesis, etc. I even used Max to write a program to help me automate a task for a text piece I am working on. Later in the term we are going to learn about video and interactive sound applications as well. I would LOVE to incorporate things like that into immersive events in the future. Here is a snapshot of a synthesis project we worked on last week:
Lastly, I know I promised another streaming solo show before the end of the year. Given all that has happened, it's not likely to happen on that timeline, but I still think it will be soon. What I can tell you is that it will be a bass clarinet show, performing the entirety of a piece of music that is very important to me (not my own music). I want to do it right and I want to make sure my body is up to it, so it will need a little more time, but I'm excited to share it with you soon. Stay tuned for more updates!