I’ve reached that stage again. The final draft. Meticulous editing. Copy and paste. Spotting double full stops. Subtle grammatical errors. The process seems never ending.
I find writing rewarding, but frustrating at times, as errors seem to creep in, almost unnoticed.
I’m working towards a paperback of my life story, focusing on music and the piano. The book – My Musical Journey by Lawrence Estrey – covers a range of topics, including gangs, religion, and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Part of the story takes place in Manchester. In the narrative, music and the piano play a pivotal role, creating a distraction from the chaos all around.
You can catch a taster by visiting my sister WordPress site. The book contains additional material.
I hope you will find the story interesting.
Freezing, but humid.
I got up early, stretched and did my breathing exercises, but felt tired and groggy.
Had a number of meetings and played the piano, but couldn’t shake off the malaise and exhaustion.
Went back to practise Beethoven’s Moonlight sonata, but couldn’t concentrate.
Arranged to meet a friend for coffee…and ended up leaving my sports bag somewhere.
Now, sitting with the heating on and the window open, and wondering when I last saw the sports bag.
I’m one of those people fortunate enough to have the ability to play works featured on Classic FM or Radio Three.
This morning, I enjoyed sitting at the piano and playing the Appassionata by Beethoven, the Second Ballade by Chopin, Hungarian Dances nos 1, 2 and 5 by Brahms, and the Nineteenth Hungarian Rhapsody by Liszt.
The Appassionata breaks the traditional boundaries of the Sonata, developing First Movement Sonata Form and introducing the abridged second and third movements. Despite the heights of emotion present in the writing, the work remains firmly in the Classical tradition, and not Romantic.
A fulfilling morning. Tired arms and wrists. Afterwards, I headed to Coffee Republic to practise my German with a friend from Germany.
Playing the piano. Classical. Jazz. Russian. Hungarian. Tango. Ragtime. Keep Fit. Ballet. Beethoven. Liszt. Brahms.
Morning. Afternoon. Evening. London.
This amazing gift that occupies so much of my time and pays my wages: the piano.
The sister blog is going well and contains some twenty posts or more, including videos of me playing the piano.
The material also covers difficult themes concerning serious gangs in the north of England, a narrow escape, and the psychological difficulties afterwards in the form of PTSD.
MyMusicalJourney by Lawrence Estrey
Hi, the good weather has gone for the most part, replaced by Autumn skies and humidity. After such a warm June, August seems almost depressing, a reminder that Autumn will come soon, and then Winter, followed by another year.
In terms of writing, I’ve reached a lull and am uncertain of how to proceed. I miss working on plot and character and churning out page after page of work, but I’m reluctant to self-publish again. I think I need to put the writing to a side for twelve months, then reconsider the options.
Meanwhile, I spend more time at the piano these days and I now have more than thirty videos of my playing on YouTube. I hope to do some more recording at some point in the near future.
Till next time.
Tonight, I will perform an informal recital in a private setting close to where I live. This is the programme:
Chopin: Nocturne in F minor
Nocturne in E minor
waltz in C sharp minor
Hungarian Dances 1, 2, and 4
Wedding Day at Troldhaugen
Maple Leaf Rag
Hungarian Rhapsody no 19
Summer will arrive soon – in just over three weeks. The weather here in the UK has improved, the temperature risen, just like summer but still spring, my favourite season. Today, the rain came without warning and the skies darkened. The air is sticky and humid.
Meanwhile, I’ve sent my novel, a psychological thriller, out to more agents and am waiting for replies. I continue to practise the piano most days in anticipation of further online or Indie recordings. Then, the languages, of course. I study French, German and Russian during my free time.
Till next time.
A delightful piece, quite melancholy and almost haunting in places, with a hint of a cadenza in the middle reminiscent of the first subject in Grieg’s piano concerto (movt 1). I also think the nocturne hints at some of the despair of the slow section in the final movement of the concerto.
Anyway, you can hear me playing the nocturne in the video below:
A delightful, energetic dance, full of Hungarian flavour. Apparently, Brahms collected, rather than composed, Hungarian military themes, then orchestrated them in a binary or ternary structure. I’m also looking at Brahms 4th and 5th dances.
Below is a video of me playing a piano version of Hungarian Dance no 2 – thanks to the wonders of modern technology, smartphones, and apps such as Titanium Recorder.