A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM, opera a cappella now available at Albany Records

Saturday, September 23, 2023

Fanfare (1991) now over at IMSLP


Most composers specialize and I am no exception. That specialization usually doesn't occur until a bit later. Our training doesn't encourage us to specialize too soon--after all we need to learn how to write in lots of different styles and with different combinations of instruments before we can tell what really ignites our passion to write. In my case, by the mid 1990s I realized that I really needed my music to go with words. So I have stopped writing instrumental music. 

The question then, is what to do with these other things, things for which, frankly, I have no reputation? My solution is going to be to make most of my non-vocal works available freely for download and performance. I have started here by uploading the score and parts to my 1991 Fanfare at IMSLP. This piece even got a nice review back then. So if you happen on this blog, feel free to download and perform this! 

Back in '91 I foolishly wrote this piece in B major, which isn't the greatest key for brass. Here it is, now living happily in B flat, a classic key for brass.

Friday, September 15, 2023

Dad's Old manuscripts


Most of you never met my father, James Christopher Ching, who died right after I graduated from college. He was a professor of what now would be called communications, but was called speech back then. Although he had some early successes, his career stalled and he wrote a couple of books that didn't get published. He did write a play, AWEOWEO, that was produced by the theater company at Hamline University where he worked. 

These manuscripts have worked their way into my storage room and I have been loathe to throw them out. But last week I digitized them and uploaded them, so the typescripts will make their way to the waste management system here where they will be burned to help produce power. 

AWEOWEO is about the overthrow of King David Kalakaua, the last monarch of Hawaii. And the other manuscript, THE MERRY MONARCH, is a biography of Kalakaua. If anyone happens to come upon this blog post and wants to download them and have a look, please feel free. My father was born and raised in Hawaii and passionate about the fate of the islands and their people.

Another unpublished manuscript is called CONFRONTATION:A RHETORIC OF CRISIS. My father taught public speaking and coauthored a textbook about it. The book is about the rhetoric used in the social protest movements from the mid fifties through the early seventies.