A talented composer friend recently posted he will cease giving concerts of his music as a way to reprioritize his time and efforts. This led me to reflect upon myself as a composer and performing musician. I performed as a solo pianist or vocalist/pianist for more than 25 years. Gigging helped fund my college education, pay my bills, and build my private music (piano/voice) teaching studio (and involve me in many family and friend weddings/funerals).
But I actually never performed because I wanted to. I performed because I felt I had to; it’s an obvious way to make money as a musician (or give something to loved ones), and it was my somewhat sneaky vehicle to share original work that otherwise would remain unheard.
At this time of my life, I’ve happily let performance go to focus on composing and writing. I don’t miss carting around a heavy 88-key weighted action keyboard and a PA system! As my friend’s actions remind me, there comes a time to reprioritize what’s important!
I’ve always had an impulse to express something, whether in words or music. I was busy with my day jobs though, and only wrote in my limited spare free time. So for the first time in my life, I’m starting to hone in on what is most authentic and meaningful to me; expressing through music and words.
How about you? Have you changed or dropped something as a way to prioritize what's important to you now? Do you perform in addition to composing or writing? If so, what does that mean to you? If not, why not? Please comment below! And share this freely!
Jenny Leigh Hodgins is a published writer, poet, lyricist, composer, vocalist, and pianist. She is director of and composer with Team4MusicandSound, a global audio post production team. Jenny Leigh has 30 years experience in music, piano, vocal and choral education and has performed for more than 25 years as a soloist throughout US and Japan. She is co-admin of multiple music-related social media groups (5400+ members), has coordinated promotional content, music-niche articles, scripts, podcasts, and multiple creative collaborations. Jenny Leigh holds a Bachelor of Music degree in music composition and her creative services are registered as JLH Creative Services, LLC.