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August 2023

Though it happens every year, it is always a shock when the summer ends. Though it is very soft boy of me to write, I’m reminded of some lyrics from a Fleet Foxes song when it gets to this time of year:

‘Summer all over

Blame it on timing

Weakening August water

Loose-eyed in morning

Sunlight covered over

Wading in sight of fire’

I don’t really know what the lyrics after ‘Summer all over’ mean, but it always feels comforting when I listen to this song at the end of August.

The month began with me working down in Ipswich for a week as a professional bassist for British Youth Music Theatre. It was an extremely useful experience where I made plenty of good contacts, gained some useful professional experience, and was also paid a decent amount (for a musician anyway) for the days I worked. I was a little rusty at the bass and I did not have a great deal of time to rehearse the parts prior to coming, so the whole thing felt like a baptism by fire. That said, being thrown into the deep end is often the best way to learn and that was certainly the case with me. I was not too fond of the play for the musical which I was playing in, which was called Harry and Greta and was based around a loose retelling of Hansel and Gretel that was set in a dystopian world where only kids were left on Earth. The premise for this show was cheesy but okay I suppose, the plot was less good, and the dialogue was… the music was alright though.

In any case, it was a very positive experience and I would happily work with BYMT again. I did have to sleep in a classroom on a bed which felt like rock, but I had it all to myself and I was fed good food by the company so I can’t really complain. The work days were long but the people there were great, especially the other freelancers in the band who I really got on with. I had never played in a professional production before and I suppose this was only really partly one as it was only kids who were acting in it, but the whole thing was ran by industry standard professionals who I learned a lot from whilst there.

After I returned from Ipswich, I found a new sense of motivation so I cracked on with work on my own musical. I made some good progress though it slowed down toward the end of the month as I had some time off over summer. I found it a little hard to work on my musical again after the break I took but I was productive in other ways which included completing my tax return for the year, finishing some Tutor Trust re-training that I had to do (as well as applying for some other tutoring assignments), and finally (most notably) I applied for a musicals workshop at the Lowry where they are potentially going to stage several scenes from my musical. I am really hoping that I get this opportunity to workshop my musical, but I’m always cautious to think good things will happen to old Will.

Outside of music and work, I have had a rather nice month. I went to Field Day festival in London with a big group of friends where we saw Aphex Twin amongst others which was phenomenal. The weekend after that I went away with Beth and some friends to Wales which was also lovely. The weather improved a little bit toward the end of the month, but like July, August was quite bad weather wise.

Keeping it short this month, September will be much busier!

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