Thursday, April 29, 2010

Concert week!

Today I pick up some new reeds (guilt guilt, but they are soooo fine!) from the mysterious G - who has decided to go public if anyone is interested. Gary Plowman is the awesome reedmaker, and he can be reached via email

He is working on a website but right now he just has the email address. I'll post a link when he gets a site up and running. His reeds are fab and he is a terrific guy too.

Anyway, stopping by to pick up reeds (he adjusts them right then if needed, advantages of living close by! AND I save postage). Then off to convocation where my student is playing the Hindemith. Much better than ME playing the Hindemith! She should do great. Back home since I have a cancellation at the college, and see no point waiting around 5 hours, then back over for one more lesson and orchestra rehearsal!

Tomorrow is dress, then our last real concert at the college. Sad in a way, but we are working on the church and it will be fine. And less than 1/2 price. WITH the latte bar!

Very excited to hear the Brahms today, have been working on the easy looking but deceptively hard triple meter things - this is the 1/2 note part that is off from the rest of the orchestra - I can play all those quick passages just fine! This is offset by my less able playing of the Barber Vln 3rd mvt - NASTY quick passages but I'm hacking away at them - I think all but one will be pretty solid, and fortunately that one is with all the other winds (hiding behind the flutes!) I can get most of it, but it's soooo long something always gets messed up. Grrr.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

a princess is a delicate thing...

Tonight is the last night of Once Upon a Mattress - fun show! And really well done for a HS production. We are in an open pit - just a space in front of the seats. They only hired 3 winds, no brass and a combo (keyboard, guitar, bass and drums). I think it is quite effective, and hopefully they are glad they hired all three of us.

It has been a really busy week with all the shows and rehearsals, orchestra rehearsal, lessons, Catapult Day at Ds school (daddy was highly impressed) and Grampa G comin to town. Fun! A trip to Cabe((as is planned for today - but no obligations beyond the show. Forcing the boyz to go, or they don't get the awesome steaks tomorrow at the best steakhouse ever.

I was surprised that I had some rhythmic "issues" on the Brahms (3) - first mvt and I blame the strings for not laying down a steady beat - on the other hand I should be able to play it no matter what they do. So I guess I better practice! Also if anyone has ever played the Barber Vln that 3rd mvt is a bear - really awkward passages at warp speed. AND if I feel like more is needed, I have all that clarinet stuff for Annie - I'm assuming I can play all the ob/eh stuff. Of course, there seems to always be SOME passage of hardness in most shows!

Sunday, April 18, 2010


I have been a terrible blogger, but since I played in a recital I suppose I must post! All went well, ended up playing the Hindemith after our flutist for the Dring Trio was called to boot camp! Apparently they just whisk you away for that, she left last week.

I was very brave and spoke to the audience before I played, just a few sentences about Hindemith. I love when people do that so I figured I should too. There were about 7 people performing, it was very nice even though we weren't allowed to use the hall on campus. This is the same hall the symphony has been priced out of playing at - sort of a shame. But I loved the church we played at - big and resonant - I really wanted to play something schmaltzy! Too bad we didn't have any rehearsal time there.

I have spent the past week frantically trying to learn the 3rd mvt of the Barber Violin cconcerto. The 2nd has this beautiful oboe solo, but the 3rd is what I have to focus on as it is faster than...well, some fast thing! And it is hard (whine whine). But so cool, I can't wait to play it.

Also working on my music typesetting - can't get my midi to midify (keyboard to talk to the computer), but I got 3 pieces from Once Upon A Mattress input to transpose down 2 whole steps. NASTY transposition, and it's going to the lovely key of Gb so I decided not to try transposing by sight, I can do up or down a step if it isn't too tricky, but this is NOT my thing. Then I felt sorry for the flute player and did her parts too. I'm sure I'm getting musical credit somewhere in orchestra heaven.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

spring gigs

Yay! I am so happy to report things are picking up. I did get the call for Annie Get Your Gun (not my favorite show, but it is a long run and it pays well!) Lots of people I love to work with are playing and it's my favorite local conductor. AND I'm getting to stretch my doubling wings as this book has oboe/EH/clar. Just took the "new" clarinet into the shop so hopefully it will be amazing when it comes back - Jim got it most of the way but it needs fine-tuning.

Also playing for Once Upon a Mattress, HS production for the Little Orchestra Conductor. Same great wind players on this one, and it is only one week. Pay ok, and has been a really fun gig in the past. Only oboe which I expect will be a no-brainer.

AND we start rehearsals for the final orchestra concert this week - Brahms 3 and Barber Vln Conc. Haven't played either one, should be fun.

Finally we are actually having quintet again tonight (first time in MONTHS!) but due to three of us playing for AGYG for 6 weeks, I think we're taking some time off. We need to discuss options, I'm very discouraged about the fact that we have only had two rehearsals since December! I'm hoping to do a few Saturday rehearsals since we can't meet on Wednesdays during the run.