As I write this, I’m three hours away from the second major ensemble concert in as many nights–not to mention four dress rehearsals this past week. Each event has been on the cusp of being too much (mostly the dress rehearsals–if tonight’s concert goes logistically smoothly, then the actual events will not have been too long).
I’m a sucker for good stuff, basically. Last night, I couldn’t resist programming a wind serenade along with the orchestral music. When Copland’s music from the TV version of Our Town became available to me, I couldn’t resist getting the actual drama involved. And I should have cut a piece from tonight’s concert, for sake of comfort in the preparation times, and for the sake of not having too much to accomplish in the dress-rehearsal days, but I simply did not. There’s just too much good music!
I’m also guilty as charged (tacitly) in overplanning for the times I’m privileged to lead gathered saints in a formal church assembly. This morning is no exception. On some occasions, I spend as much time trying desperately to cut material (so the whole assembly won’t be “too long”) as I spend assimilating and planning and gathering and shaping the material to begin with.
A year and a half ago, I wrote “Get Over It,” in which I took to task those who worry too much about ending an assembly “on time.” “The anxiousness makes me even more anxious,” I quipped, after having worried about one “extra” song and two “extra” minutes one Sunday. Yet it’s easier for me to say “get over it” than for those who are “subjected” to the fruits of my planning. I still think I need to work on doing less, and doing it better–whether in church or in my day job.