Tuesday, October 14, 2008


I coached the youth orchestra winds last night! I haven't done that for a long time (since 1990) and it was fun. This was a really different experience - there was a younger orchestra and the more experienced group - I teach (or will be teaching) all the oboes. I must say they were kinda the weak link! Not their faults - the oboe is hard...my 8th grader playing principal had just pulled out a new reed and it was her ONLY reed and it was AWFUL. I mean gross. So I gave her one of my reeds because I was just going to kill me, I didn't have time to adjust it or anything but it was way better.

The clarinets sounded much improved after I got them to put air through the horn (in both groups) and there was a saxophone-switcher playing bassoon, she'd had it a couple of weeks but she was pretty good. They also put the piano with me - I'm sure they just wanted to have him with some group - but he is this 9-year-old genius playing the Grieg concerto - amazing. I heard the winds warming up and told his mom they could just go find a practice room because this would be stupid for him to be with us. She agreed.

In the more experienced group I had all girls so there was a big giggle factor. Also we were in the teacher's lounge which was HOT. And I had no music for this group - although it was stuff I had played before. The oboe (only one) had been trying to schedule a lesson but we can't meet for a couple more weeks, and her reed was dead dead dead. It was so old she wouldn't tell me and again, it was her only one. (I of the 43 reeds that I carry around do NOT understand) They were playing Sparticus which has the huge oboe solo. I think she'll be fine once she gets a vibrating reed, but you couldn't even here her with just the wws. Although her rhythms were pretty good. Glarinets were giggly and principal had forgotten her music, so there were 3 of them reading the second part. Whatever. One good flute and one crazy loud girl who is extremely enthusiastic. I wondered if she was on something. Probably not, just big personality.

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