Many writers are multi-talented, not the least of which is Patricia Kiyono. She’s back to share about her love of music.
When I was in the fourth grade, a man came to my classroom and gave us a special test, which was supposed to tell him what students had musical aptitude. Apparently I scored well, because a little later my mom was invited to a meeting where the band directors explained the instrumental music program in our school district. That was the beginning of my life as a musician, an experience I enjoy to this day.
All through high school and college, performing in music groups comprised a major part of my life. And even after I started my teaching career, I managed to squeeze time for playing in community bands and orchestras. I’ll never have the skill to play professionally, but I enjoy playing and I find that all the problems I face in my life fade away when I’m making music.
While my children were growing up, I insisted that they both take piano lessons, and they both participated in school music groups. Though they complained about it at the time, I find them both well versed in music of many genres, and when they come to visit, they’ll often sit at the piano and play a familiar tune. I think they appreciate those lessons more than they’ll admit!
Andrew and Laura, the main characters in my regency romance novella Love’s Refrain, are both musicians. Andrew, the Earl of Covington, is an accomplished flautist, and Lady Laura Montgomery is a skilled singer. They both find that music lessens the burdens in their lives, and heir love of music is what brings them together.
Lady Laura Montgomery would much rather spend her summer at the family estate, but instead she must act as her stepsister’s chaperone for the London season. She takes solace in her poetry books and in her love of music. They’re all she has to comfort her as she once again faces the man who stole her heart ten years ago.
Andrew Bradford, Earl of Covington, needs an heir, but he’s not looking for love. His mother has made her selection, but he can’t help being drawn to the girl’s chaperone. Can he hope to make a match based on more than beauty and suitability?
Excerpt from Love’s Refrain:
She read the words again, her spirits rising with each line. The words suggested a melody, slightly melancholy, beginning in the lower part of her vocal range and gradually rising in pitch, reflecting the dawning of hope. The music in her head cheered her so much she began to sing out loud, her voice slowly gaining intensity and assurance, until she threw her entire being into the song.
A second melody began to weave its way through hers. The mellow tones of a wooden flute played a merry dance with her song, sometimes echoing, sometimes dipping below to accompany, sometimes soaring above to embellish. She rose, going to the open window, and continued to sing, hoping to see where the music came from, but no mystery musician stood in the courtyard below.
The flautist was so skilled he seemed to anticipate her every turn. Entranced, Laura forgot about the words and danced about, though she continued the melody, substituting “la” for the lyrics.
She didn’t know how long she and the flute player engaged in their duet, but the door slamming open behind her had her gasping.
“Laura! Didn’t you hear me calling you? I need your help getting ready for the Dunwiddie party tonight. I simply can’t abide Francesca’s shoddy hairdressing again.”
Her spirits still floating after the music session, Laura beamed at her sister. “I guess I was daydreaming, Juliet. I’m sure some handsome gentleman will sweep you off your feet. Maybe tonight.”