I’ve been in a pretty nice place for the last 2 years, writing nine straight major works on commission. And now as I’m completing the last of them, I’m looking forward to a period of no deadlines. But I know that a bit of depression is inevitable when I get to the finish line.
It’s great to get commissions – what’s not to like about having someone ask you for music, getting paid to compose, and having someone else organize the premiere? No complaints here.
But it’s also nice to have a chance to collect thoughts and strike out on my own. Hopefully the post-commission blues won’t take me down too long, before my inner motivations take over.
Hopefully also there will be other commissions in my future. We’re in a period of low risk-taking, and commissioning new music is hardly a safe investment. But there are still many individuals and foundations with the passion and vision to recognize the value of new art to our civilization. I hope it’s not too quixotic to believe they will be able to regroup and recover the means and the spirit to jump back into the fray.
Obviously, many of them have more important priorities at the moment – which is as it should be.