First Symphony (everything you probably never wanted to know about…)

So, let’s talk a little about my first (and still only) symphony. First attempts I’ve found on my harddisk are from September 2001. Cubase VST 5 dot something, I suppose. And of course no money for a multi-gigabyte sample library. Instead, I bought the cheapest thing I could afford: a WAV-audio version of Peter Siedlaczek’s Advanced Orchestra and put it into a freeware sampler. Note for note had to be mapped, trimmed and looped. Whoa, took some time to prepare. However, the Siedlaczek Orchestra does not sound bad at all, I like the sound texture of it very much, especially the woodwinds. I think, this is still one of the really beautyful library recordings. Great work and many thanks to Peter Siedlaczek. Still, I could not compose with it. It simply took to much resources off my 199x-dated PC. So I developed a second sampler setup with all (several hundred) wave-files reduced to mono and a lower resolution. Only after everything was composed and finished, I took the “big” library version for final rendering. The version was released 2002. Ah, and there’s still some choir voices in this version. Enjoy the 320 kbit/s rendering (this is something like a “historic shellack recording”…): 

After this, I decided to move on to a real orchestra library. Here comes Gary Garritan. Finally, something already taylored and programmed into the NI Kontakt player, which was simply amazing for me! Garritan’s Personal Orchestra was something like a revolution at that time and it encouraged many talented musicians to produce orchestral scores. So I began to move the symphony to that new library, adjusted controls (which worked in a different way now) and rewrote some parts of the score. The choir disappeared in this version. I released my new “Symphony No 1” in 2004. Here are the 128 kbit renderings:

Still not satisfied after this, I changed my library again to East West Symphony Orchestra Gold Pro XP (what a pompous name…), which is a really marvellous instrument. Since I changed to Kontakt, this was a great tool for me. Sound is terrific, many articulations, easy usage. Again, I had rewritten some bars and changed some minor parts of the arrangement when I released this version of my symphony four years later in 2008.

Top favourite in download statistics is the fourth movement which has still 300-400 completed downloads each month (which is quite nice for a 21st century orchestral piece, isn’t it?) The second movement is next “in statistics” and this is a very emotional piece, beginning with calm and quiet strings – with continously building up tension.



Second Symphony

So, when will we finally see my second orchestral symphony? Some may remember first versions of my first symphony, composed 2002 and rendered with some, well, hm, “orchestral sounds”. Then we had a second “release” – First Symphony, 2.0 ;-) and finally one in 2008. Fine, and I’m even rather happy with that work.

After some more electronic experiments, my second symphony is currently a “work in progress”. So we will see (i.e. hear) something in the next two years. Keep your fingers crossed, this is hard work (or was it “hardly work”?)



My Sinfonietta was composed in 2003 (with several smaller changes until 2007). At this time I used the great Garritan Personal Orchestra – which is a cute little orchestral package with a great price and low system requirements. Well, I needed low system requirements and low prices, anyway. In 2003, Garritan made a composer’s challenge: up to 7 minutes, only Garritan Personal Orchestra (GPO), the winner will be played live with a real orchestra. The winner was someone really talented, but at leastI’ve got some “honorable mentioning” on Garritan’s website – thanks for this, was much fun and pleasure to contribute this little work!

After this, I’ve changed minor things in instrumentation and changed to my new (and much bigger) orchestra library (which is the NI Kontakt version of East West Symphonic Orchestra Gold, in case you want to know), the music itself remained the same. The piece has quite a light mood, is built upon a ternary rhythm (maybe something like a fast waltz…?) and it’s building blocks are just a few musical elements: these elements are repeated and transformed throughout the piece, and I still have happy feelings when I hear it, especially at the opening bars when the woodwinds “chatter”.

So here’s the link to Sinfonietta:

Have fun and enjoy,