Summertime A time for creation and recreation

Living and working in a fully residential New England prep school affords precious little free time for pursuing activities outside of that job. I am fortunate in being able to combine my school work with my duties as Music Director of The Boston Cecilia. This involves a weekly run-out from Concord, NH to Boston, MA for rehearsals. The other main professional focus in my life - composing - takes a back seat until the long summer vacation. Then, however, during the months of June, July and August, I take great pleasure in working energetically on various projects; often a couple of commissioned works, occasionally a private project of my own, and most recently preparing a large backlog of unpublished works for publication by Biretta Books.

I am fortunate to live in a beautiful part of the world, and even more fortunate to be able to escape for a stretch of time each summer to the beach with my family. Being by the ocean is a particular passion for all of us, and I find it to be hugely restorative and relaxing. I am not someone who unwinds, detaches or disconnects well. In fact, I feel more relaxed when I am able to multitask, often bouncing from one activity to another, whether it is composing, catching up on e-mail, blogging, dreaming, cooking dinner for the family, swimming, or laying out plans for the coming season. I have found that this combination of activities works best for me, and I am very lucky that my family tolerates this style of living too!

The following narrative gives a picture of what summer has been like this year, and is accompanied by some beautiful photography of the St. Paul's School campus (where we live) taken by a former student, Joon Sung Park.

My first composition of the summer, written in June and premiered on August 6th by Chorus Abilene, in Abilene, Texas.
My second composition of the summer, written in July and presented to my parents on their 50th Wedding Anniversary in Aruba on July 16th.
My third composition of the summer, a set of Four Latin Motets (Ubi Caritas shown here, and Tota Pulchra Es, Tu Es Petrus and Tantum Ergo completing the set) were written shortly after returning from Aruba.
Then it was on to the nitty-gritty detailed work of preparing some earlier compositions for publication. The first was my 2006 composition In Sure And Certain Hope, which was written for, and recorded by, The Tiffany Consort.
Then it was on to my 2015 setting of the Gloria, which was premiered by Joyful Noise this past March and April.
Then it was on to my 2002 Missa Brevis from my New York City days, with a couple of movements reworked in different keys, and the scores cleaned up and made consistent.
Finally, I sent off my Andover Canticles (above) and my Beverly Farms Mass to the publisher. I expect to receive proofs of all these newly composed, and revised, works over the course of the next few weeks, and will again devote some focused hours to checking over them in great detail before they are released for purchase by Biretta Books.
Aruba - July 2016

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Created By
Nicholas White
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