For Christmas 2017, I decided to go all out and delve into the unknown… I decided to write my own arrangement of Walking in the Air from The Snowman, and play all five parts. Traditionally, a wind quintet would have a French Horn rather than a Tenor Saxophone, but seeing as that’s not one of the instruments I own (or can play!), I decided to pop a saxophone in there instead. (We all know reeds are better anyway…)
I think the arrangement works fairly well. I do love the music from the Snowman, and it always makes me feel very Christmassy, so it was nice to be able to spend a bit of time working on the arrangement. Every instrument gets the tune at some point, although in retrospect, the bassoon part really is very exhausting as there is nowhere to breathe! I’ve sat in many band rehearsals over the years complaining about the bassoon part always being repetitive and having no rests, so I really ought to have known better. Whoops!
One of the biggest issues with putting this arrangement together was actually dealing with the difficulties in maintaining decent tuning. When you play in a band, you automatically tune and adjust to the instruments around you. Unfortunately, when you are recording each instrument separately, you don’t have this luxury. Although the timing is fairly accurate, thanks to the metronome in my earpiece, there are definitely one or two dodgy moments in here!
But you get the idea. And anyway, it wouldn’t really be Christmas without one of my silly videos, would it?