Today I visited campus for my 2nd class meeting of the semester (“Symphonic Literature”), stopped by the Donovan Scholar office, and took a short side trip into what I’m pretty sure is the original UK campus area from its earliest history (pics below). Returning to my studies is simply exhilarating. I know I’m probably unusual for this — those who were lucky enough to go to college have clear impressions of those educational experiences, and they often vary from the utilitarian (“I got a [or failed to get] a good job…*yawn*…”) to the disgusted (“It was hard! I hated my professors! I hated most of my classes!”) I lament that advanced studies aren’t positive for many people. They’re unbelievably exciting and interesting to me. It doesn’t hurt, of course, that I have only personal goals, and no achievement hurdles I have to overcome. But, thanks to the dedicated educators I was raised by, universities were always, to me, first and foremost, a place where knowledge and research were pleasurable, exciting, and valued. The personal and social advancement of knowledge is not only necessary, it can be one of the most wonderful experiences anyone can have.
This posting is in keeping with the lion’s share of the media coverage I’ve managed to get recently — mostly about life-long learning, less so about the music. In the music category, I’ve received approval from brass instructors in the College of Music that my brass quintet will get a read. Whoa! Like the choral performance premiere I managed to get this fall, this is incredible news! I’ll write more extensively about that as things happen.
I’ve also started a new composition with some unusual performance goals, driven by my desire to learn as much as I can about the instruments and players needed to render my work. I’ll be looking at instruments that, so far, have had no or limited presence in my past works. As always, that is all contingent on my first meeting with instructor and mentor Patrick Valentino. The music is what I’m about, and I’m so excited that my work on it has restarted in earnest with a new semester. Watch this space for more!