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  • Writer's pictureWill Sharland

Feb 2024

Updated: Mar 11

Buzz buzz buzz I’ve been a busy Manchester bee! If that cringe inducing sentence wasn’t enough to turn you away from reading the rest of this months blog then well done, you have passed the test! Your reward is getting to hear about all of the wondrous things that I have been up to in my life this month which I know all two of you who read this blog are dying to know about!

The month began strong as I had my first ever piano piece premiered at the RNCM as part of a concert during disability week. The piece was written about the Whorlton Hall abuse scandal and the pianist did a fantastic job in performing the piece. It was a good start to the month, and I feel happy for the experience. In a way this concert set the tone for the rest of the month, for I have been busy with many things across February. 

Most notably I met up with Fiona Stuart at RNCM and we finally booked a space for the next workshop for my musical which will be taking place at the start of March. We booked a date which was a little sooner than I would have liked but I managed to get the re-draft of the script and score for my musical finished a week and a bit ahead of the workshop which would be enough time hopefully for everyone to practice. Everyone seems very busy at the moment, so it will be a smaller turn out than the first one no doubt. Even so, it will be a very useful experience. I have also been looking more into the future with this project, primarily at funding as I am going to apply again for the Creative Innovator Award at RNCM to hopefully get some capital behind this project. I applied last year and my application was very rushed, I am however more confident that I can get the funding if I apply again.

Apart from this, I have been also very busy with my orchestral piece which is mostly complete though it will need a few more weeks to finish. I met up with some of the other composers who are writing for the same orchestra as me and some of them are ahead, some of them are behind so I don’t feel too worried about not completing it in time. I have had some writers block over the month though which I began to come out of the closer it got to March. I began listening to a lot more orchestral music with the score in front of me in order to gain some inspiration which helped majorly. I did manage to make some progress with several of my chamber compositions, though none of them are going to be complete before my orchestral piece is finished. I also began having piano lessons at the RNCM. It has really made me aware of how bad I actually am but that is not a bad thing in a way. I have been practicing somewhat regularly and it is amazing how much I have already improved as a result.

Outside of RNCM, I was encouraged by my friend not long after I was back from India to apply to his company as a Sound Designer. The job had well over a hundred applicants but my friend put in a good word for me with the hiring manager and he told me that the hiring manager liked what he saw on my website. I felt a little bit iffy about applying, mostly due to the fact that it is a gambling company but I felt that it would be an opportunity I could not really pass up so I applied. I also began tutoring again with Tutor Trust after a fairly long hiatus. So far it has been going well though I feel that I may have picked a bad time to start working again given my workload. That said, after India I feel that I am especially low on funds so I don’t have a great deal of choice. 

In my personal life, February has been quite a pleasant month. Beth and I went to Wales for a couple of days with her friend for her birthday which was very nice. I also went to the cinema a couple of times with her where we saw two really great films: Poor Things and The Holdovers. The latter of which was my favourite though both were exceptional. It’s encouraging to see some good independent films being made given the slosh of shit that has dominated the cinemas in recent years. Possibly the strangest thing that has happened this month is that my flatmate and I adopted a cat for a couple days which was trapped in a corridor in our flat building. We tried to find the owner for it but we were unable to. In the end, we took it to the vet who told us it was not chipped and that we should just let it outside and that hopefully it will find its way back. We have not seen the cat since so hopefully it has found its way home. It was a very cute kitten, which in hindsight must have definitely not been a stray given that she was so well groomed and also toilet trained. In any case, we did what we thought we had to for the sake of that poor little kitty. My flatmate and I also did another podcast which was one of our best ones yet (though I still don’t want to release any of them).

That’s all for Feb folks, bye bye.

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