Welcome back to Composer Spotlight, the blog series where we speak with composers around the world to discuss their creative process. In todays edition, we are pleased to share with you this exclusive interview with UK-based composer Frederick Naftel.
Read on below to discover the interview!
How did you get into composing music? - I started writing music while still at school but it was through my study of various orchestral scores while at school and later university, combined with my time in youth orchestras, that helped me learn more about form and techniques and which sounds work best.
How would you describe your compositional process?- Ideas begin in my head at first, melodic motifs forming along with certain gestures. I then plan out the structure and instrumentation of each work and write directly into full score. Sometimes, a literary or visual influence acts as an incentive.
Frederick recently recorded his second string quartet with us, which is available to listen in the video link above.
You recently recorded your string quartet piece with us. How did you find the experience and has this influenced your future work in any way? - This was an invaluable experience for me, seeing how a work is put together for a recording and being able to offer input when required. This is very important for a composer wishing to hear how all the ideas sound when played by first rate musicians. Now I am very keen to get more of my work recorded this way, so that I can then develop and promote my music.
What do you think is the most important thing for composers looking to develop their craft? - I know many composers say they don't set out thinking of their audience but it is an essential part of communicating your craft in order to ensure future performances. You should also consider the musicians you are writing for. Trying to be "different" or "original" is not always a good thing. Just be honest with yourself and write what comes naturally....and don't be afraid of absorbing "influences"!
What are your future plans? - I am currently working on my 3rd Symphony, which I would like to offer to Sir James MacMillan and The BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, who have already expressed interest in looking over the completed work. Another work in the pipeline is the completion of a Requiem for female voices, piano, string orchestra and percussion, of which the "Sanctus" & "Agnus Dei" already exist. I also hope to develop a full-length ballet on the legend of Pandora, for which an orchestral suite has already been composed.
That concludes things for this edition of Composer Spotlight. Thanks for checking out this blog post!
For more from Frederick you can check out his website using the link below: https://britishmusiccollection.org.uk/composer/frederick-naftel https://composersedition.com/frederickpaulnaftel/
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