Welcome our guest, Tony Manfredonia. Tony is an award-winning composer and orchestrator for concert halls, video games, and media, providing a multi-layered and sensory experience through expressive, colorful orchestration and warm melodies. He recreates stories, environments, and everything in between through massive orchestral productions, as well as intimate atmospheres.
Fun as it is, how do we balance a very busy career as a composer/orchestrator/performer (or any artistic career) with the needs of our family? Is it really an “either/or” perspective? A few weeks ago, I ran across a tweet from the amazing Tony Manfredonia that caught my attention. Raw and vulnerable, he invited us into his heart as he walked through a family tragedy. What he discovered will, no doubt, help us become healthier in our budding careers. What do you say, we let him take it from here?
A the end of the day, tiny details aren’t as important
as you might make them out to be.
A Word from Composer/Orchestrator Tony Manfredonia
When Jim (Maria’s dad) commit suicide, it was like the world stopped. My creation stopped. My emailing stopped. My teaching stopped. Everything came to a halt. It during those days following that I had an overwhelming feeling of: “The music I make, ultimately, doesn’t matter as much.”
This doesn’t mean I don’t care about composing. I love it deeply, and it’s my main source of income for my family. It’s necessary.
But, what I did discover was that those extended nights of stress over minute details are worthless. Striving for perfection is one thing. Pushing yourself to the brink of an unhealthy life to try to make things “perfect,” on the other hand, is nothing short of wasting time.
All of that time spent trying to make my music perfect could’ve been spent with my wife, my friends, or my family. That’s the stuff that matters the most. This tragedy flooded me with all the times I could’ve spent with Jim and family but chose not to because of work. Moving forward, I’m making a promise to allow more and adequate family time.
Death is inevitable. When I die, what will my wife, friends, and family remember? The tiny details I fixed in that one soundtrack? Or will they remember the love I shared with them?
Life is precious, and far too short. It’s not worth getting hung up, anxious, or obsessive over little details when there are so many more important things in life. You can replace a bad piece of music. You can’t replace relationships.
Moving ahead, you could say that I’m raring to continue doing the best I can without becoming a slave to my work. Working hard, working smart, making the best music I can make while maintaining a primary focus on my friends and family. Life is too short to do it otherwise.
Thank you, Tony, for taking time to share this jewel of wisdom!