Monday, June 14, 2004

Me and the Punk Rock Orchestra

Yesterday I attended a Punk Rock Orchestra rehearsal to deliver the parts for my arrangement of my song "Road Spiders". That's all I was planning to do, but when I got there the director, John Gluck, asked me if I'd brought my flute. Apparently their first flute player, Suzanne, wasn't going to be in for a couple of rehearsals and he asked me to sit in.

It was a blast. The pieces we rehearsed were "Nazi Punks Fuck Off" by the Dead Kennedys, disturbingly morphed with Leo Delibes' Flower Duet; "Mosh of the Toreadors" arranged by John based on Carmen; and an arrangement of "New York's Alright If You Like Saxophones" by Fear. It was a lot of fun.

We ran through "Road Spiders" too. I got to demonstrate the flute part. I took comments from the players who needed changes made to their parts (mostly to make them less long, not so many page turns, easier to read, etc.). Nobody was amplified so we couldn't hear the mezzo-soprano's rendering of the words, but I could read her lips, and I'm sure later on I'll hear them amplified. I know I did the right thing leaving the brasses out of the arrangement because the bass line was quite loud enough with just the low woodwinds and the strings. One brass player who was there said the piece sounded like Vulcan music. A violist gave me a big thumbs-up and Michael Mendelssohn, one of their singers, gave me a high five. John really seemed to like it. So it's a good start!

Will Grant, Jim Carr, and I are getting ready for our gig at the Luggage Store Gallery on July 1. We have sketched out a basic outline for our 30 minutes. I have written all-new words, and the music will be improvised. You should come hear it!