My task for the past 2 weeks was to take the first draft of "NamePieces" and clean it up. Re-check each staff line for readability and phrasing ( should I use the term stave, and achieve more gravitas?); Edit out the "Hp." markings on each staff line; add dynamics and tempo markings; cut the photos to a vertical page; re-order some of the pages; convert the PDF Preview document to a Word document. This sounded relatively straight-forward, even though I wasn't sure how to do some of these tasks.
There were seven NamePieces, so I thought I would do one a day, leaving extra time to pull things together. Adding the dynamics and tempos markings was more daunting than I expected. I knew how I wanted it to sound, knew how I liked to play it, but second -guessed how another harpist would read or feel the markings. The measures looked cramped, and there were too many composer directions. As I worked on that first NamePiece, it sounded overly repetitive with not enough contrast. I kept myself from changing it, deciding it was my first effort, and it was "good enough".
Then I looked at "Matt and Alix". Why did I repeat 4 measures, repeatedly? In the first NamePiece the repetitions were different, but they weren't different enough. In "Matt and Alix", there were 4 very different variations, but, I was repeating 4 measures in each section. I had been away from the piece for 8 months, and I could hear it with new ideas. So I worked on composing, but that was not what I was supposed to be doing. After 4-5 days of work, I had 8 measures of accompaniment changes.
I wanted to leave it alone, but I thought if I am putting this out there, I should bring it to where I want it at this time.
The first four measures of the waltz section as originally composed, with the new 4 measure accompaniment played afterwards. A little more harmonic interest, but when will this stop, and wasn't it good enough without the changes?
Here is the entire piece as originally composed. Why have I started messing with it? It is a way of avoiding completion!