I've been thinking a lot lately about tying new things, whether it's a writing style or eating at a new restaurant, the only thing I'm not ready to try is any kind of seafood. I'm not the type of person who puts myself out there; I was always quiet in school, and I still am, but I had the opportunity to go to a speed networking event in Manhattan a few weeks ago. I met so many new people who were also artists just trying to create things, and as overwhelming as it was, I had a lot of fun putting myself out there. I got to break out of my comfort zone, that holds me hostage every now and then.
Last semester, I did something a little risky. I was able to be in a class that was all about musical theatre, specifically songwriting. In the past, I have tried to write songs, but I came to the conclusion that I was never any good, on top of having little to no musical ability.
It was the only class I looked forward to going to during my 20-Credit-Semester-From-Hell, due to the fact that it was just so much fun, and everyone in it was really cool. Like most of my writing classes, it was an environment where we all became invested in each other's characters and where the story was going. In this class, I learned about song structure, and eventually wrote a 15(ish) minute musical called Letters to Meghan. I've been able to try my hand at songwriting again, and haven't stopped since. As soon as our professor told us we could bring in music to go along with it, I immediately thought of my friend Dennis, who is an aspiring composer. His main goal is to write film scores, but he was excited to work on Letters with me. The style of the music is similar to that of contemporary shows like Dear Evan Hansen, and even though Dennis's style was more on the classical side, he broke out of his comfort zone too and wrote exactly what I was looking for.
This process wasn't easy. It was hard to communicate what I wanted from him, considering how little I know about music. It was frustrating, but at one point he played a few notes on the piano that I really liked. Those four notes became the opening for "Was I" which is the finale of the show. I wrote the lyrics within an hour and we had 3/4 of a song. The song is still coming along, but in the meantime feel free to listen to the demo I've posted. Just like everything, this will take time to develop. I'm very excited for this project, and hopefully will be releasing a final version soon.
Moral of the story: Don't be afraid to try something new, you may come to find that you enjoy it, and end up creating something really great.
If you have the chance, check out Dennis's website. If you're looking for a composer, or someone to arrange music, Dennis is your guy!