This evening I recorded my fourth recording in the second Evening Improvisation series. I have had a busy couple of weeks, so I have been planning this for some time. One thing I can say, no improvisation is ever truly improvised, and in this case, I had a lot of planning time. Perhaps, that is why I really like it! Usually I might do three or four takes before I am satisfied. And I wouldn’t post a video if I didn’t like it, but this was one improvisation I knew was good the moment I lifted by arms off the keys. (Spoiler!)
This particular stop, the 8′ Trumpet on the swell, is quite noisy and nasally. I had a different stop in mind originally, but upon reflection of my intentions, I realized that it would work rather ideally for this stop. If Evening Improv II: III was an aria, that I would call this a fanfare. A little on the nose for a trumpet stop, but why not! What I was going for was a buzzing sort of accompaniment, one where pitch is indecipherable. Then, as you listen, a theme emerges.
For me, when there are strong non-tonal elements, it’s important to simplify other things. The form of the improvisation is A-B-A1. There is only one theme and at most it is inverted and presented in no more than two voices. The improvisation is also short. I knew that I had had enough of what I was doing and couldn’t sustain itself any longer. Whereas the idea, the buzzing, was planned, it is those other elements that reveal themselves to me as the improvisation happens.