Sunday, September 19, 2010

La Boheme

OMG this is the best music ever! Well, some of the best music ever. I am LOVING that I get to play! The orchestra is quite good, and I don't think I'm making a fool of myself (which is nice). They have brought in a conductor from NY, and I am quite amazed that he does in fact have distinct upbeats and downbeats! This is rather unusual for an opera/choral conductor (in my experience). I am finding him very easy to follow and obviously really knows the score - some conductors blame the musicians for "not following" when they are just lost. Very annoying.

Today we had the sitzprobe, only time we will actually see the singers. I think things went ok, few scary places but we have 2 more rehearsals. The best parts of this music are the luscious chords that just grow out of the phrases - it is just wonderful to feel your note fit in this huge sound.

Tomorrow the community band starts up for fall - once again I am planning to play clarinet. We have a new conductor and they may not like the idea since I leave at the break (so I can put my 8yo to bed). THe last 2 conductors have been happy to have him come to rehearsals, but we'll see what this one thinks.

And the little orchestra started up last week - we open our season with Mahler 1 (another fabulous piece of music!) and Tchaik Romeo and Juliet (which we previewed this summer).

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Doubling mania

Fun times here on the peak - yesterday a package arrived with the bass clarinet neck! For anyone who may have forgotten, J got me a bass clarinet for my birthday (fixer upper) which he had basically fixed up, but it had no neck. This is a huge problem, and he was actually contemplating MAKING one (OMG) but fortunately he found one on line. Seems to work great! Now I am getting excited about the BC, but it does need some adjustment work before it gets the green light.

Tonight I'm going to play tenor sax with my friend's dance band, just to get playing again. It really helps me to have a group to play with. I have about a month til rehearsals start for West Side, so all my weird instruments need to be ready by then. Of course I'm just assuming my oboe playing will be fabulous (hahaha).

I am having the best time rehearsing for La Boheme - the winds are truly a joy to hear. I am a bit concerned about how they are going to fit us all in the pit though - lots of percussion and people, at least there is no keyboard. And it is kind of weird they hired double winds except oboe! I don't know if they just couldn't find someone, or what - but you'd think they would have given me the 2nd/eh book to cover some of the exposed parts (which the conductor sings while he looks at me mournfully). Music is great though, and I can't wait for the sitzprobe (when the singers come in) on Sunday.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Crisis du jour

I am running around putting out fires left and right (isn't that the definition of motherhood? Does this mean I'm the "mother" of the symphony? Huh) Several things I don't feel like I should post even anonymously, but the latest crisis is kind of my fault - I BRILLIANTLY found a 2nd oboe (our usual player is back from summer break early), and even though she will have no rehearsals she has played everything on oboe or violin so she'll be fine for this pops concert. BUT...

She goes to school at Snazzy Private College. Which is about an hour north of my house (and another hour to the concert). Our concertmaster teaches at SPC, and he was happy to give her a ride. Unfortunately, he miscalculated his car space and this evening he called and was so sorry but he couldn't fit her in. The other two people who live anywhere close are unavailable, and they are kind of occupied since it is the conductor and one of the soloists (my great friend M). Anyway, I had SAID I would get her if necessary, and it looks like it is. Which means I leave my house at 9 for a 11:30 call.

AND my husband had offered to take photos at the concert, so he was planning to go with me, but now he really doesn't want to leave 90 minutes earlier than WE have to take 2 cars. Argh. But I AM the only person who seemed to even care if we had a 2nd oboe (and that is not a paid position, so it is hard to find anyone). Feeling frustrated and a bit "used". I'll get over it - I am quite excited for the upcoming season and I have several good reeds!