Once upon a time, I was at CMI 2013 leaving an awesome meeting. I was then approached by the ever-popular Peter Kim, Bandmaster of the Mayfair Community Corps Band (affectionately referred to as “BMK“) to write a piece for the Mayfair Corps’ 25th anniversary celebrations in December. I happily accepted the request and have been thinking about that said date in December ever since. I didn’t officially start writing until I got home from CMI, but one idea was strongly wedged in my head: the idea that we as Christians have nothing to fear because we have God in our lives and he is our protector. So I rolled with that and a few ideas circled around my head of what I was going to do.
I intended on using Martin Luther’s battle call “Ein Feste Burg” (A Mighty fortress) and Matt Redman’s contemporary worship song “You Never Let Go.” The piece needed a name. I originally was going to call it “Fearless,” but that name is already taken in the form of a Euphonium solo by Captain Martin Cordner. My friend/fellow composer Sam Park (also writing a piece for the Mayfair 25th anniversary), suggested to look at scripture for examples. I stumbled upon the idea of “Whom Shall I Fear,” taken from both Scripture (Psalm 27:1) and a worship song by Chris Tomlin. I felt that since I was using the title, I might as well include the song too. The fusion of these three turned into a 5-6 minute overture with a few recurring themes and, you guessed it, Star Wars references!
Where would a Freddy Mbesi piece be without a Star Wars reference? Haha. The plan for this piece is to be premiered on December 8, 2013 at the Mayfair Corps. I’m looking to that day with great anticipation! “Whom Shall I Fear” will have its own page on here momentarily.
I also have been invited to attend the 2014 North American Composers Forum held at Asbury University on January 9-12, 2014. It will be a return appearance, my first time going was at the last forum in 2012…and what an amazing experience it was! My works Amazing Grace! and King of Majesty were both featured on the program during some point of that weekend. It’s truly an amazing experience to hear your music played and to work with both “famous” composers in the SA world and fellow peers who have hit the same stumbling points as you have and are all learning together. One of my fondest memories of the last composers forum was on the first night. Colonel Robert Redhead (who will be making a return appearance as well) gave a devotional centered around his major work Corpus Christi (F.S. 520), which was my very first interaction with the piece whatsoever. It meant so much more to me when I was able to perform it for the first time recently at CMI this past summer. Anyways, I am looking forward to another great time of learning and fellowship.
Stay tuned for the next update from TroyFred Productions!