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July 2005

July 27, 2005 08:23

What a day.

I had my lesson today, later in the week as my teacher had opera rehearsals so he had to reschedule. I had a pretty good lesson - he was really pleased with how my Bach was coming along. But he realised this - I apprently have a lot of tension in my hips. I've never noticed this before, but it could explain a bit - for example why I sometimes get lower back pain. My dad has a history of back pain, so perhaps I might see if I can go see a chiro or a physio.

It was my girlfriend's birthday today (Happy Birthday Isha!) so I made sure I spent some time with her. We spent some of the afternoon together when we both had a break for a couple of hours, and I also went back to her place to have dinner and cake with her family.

In my History tutorial today, I discovered a new favourite composer - Mahler. We heard a bit of his second symphony. Man is it amazing. We only heard bits of it (considering that it is a 1.5 hour composition, and we have a 1 hour tutorial, we only could hear a bit) but those bits were just incredible. I'm going to make a point to try and find time to listen to all of the symphonies. Did Mahler write anything for violin? Must investigate.

After my tutorial, and before isha had finished her rehearsal, I did some practice on my bach. I played a bit of the Largo, but focussed on the Allegro. I was really happy with how I was playing it, so I played it all the way through, with repeats, at about probably 80% concert tempo. Man it tired me out. I started sweating - which I've never really done while playing.

Well I should get to bed. Although I'd like to be able to sleep in tomorrow, I should get up and do some practice.

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July 21, 2005 05:06

I haven't done much work on my composition - will work on it at some point tonight.
I got two hours of violin practice done today - technical work and more Bach. I'm trying to focus on relaxing my hand, especially in the Largo to try get a more beautiful sound out of the chords. I'm also toying around with the idea of pulling the tempo around alot, just waiting a bit on all chords as they're fairly important structurally. This will also try and help me realise that I have more time to get the chords out. But I'm trying to keep the Allegro Assai straight, with no tempo changes until the last few notes.

A few things happened today - I went to my luthier to see if he could sell my violin on consignment for me, which he agreed to with the price I was looking for total coming to me Net - ie minus costs. He obviously thinks he can get more for it than I thought it was worth. I'll also be able to order a Coda Bow through him - which I will be able to pay for with the money I get from this violin sale (when it comes in). I'm going to get the Conservatory - hopefully I'll like it. :>

I also met my new student - Connor. He's been playing for a year, but is doing really good stuff so far. I only hope I can continue with the good quality teaching that he has received so far. I was able to watch a lesson as a hand over, so I could see how he had been taught, which was useful for me as I haven't taught beginners before. Games and small theory, plus practical things doing what they enjoy and what I want done is the way to go it seems. I'm looking forward to seeing how I go with this one.

That's it for now, I believe I need to go wash the dishes, and then hopefully I can watch some more cricket :)

Edit: I did end up doing some work on my composition (as well as being able to watch a fair bit of an exciting days cricket). I found some poetry about butterflies to give me ideas about what types of words people use to describe them, and then use those descriptions to put in keys that are said to describe those feelings. So I have an idea that I can have a different key for each theme - unrelated yet all expressing the same sorts of things. However, the key I want to use for the brass section - E Major (due to the description of "Exclaimations of Joy, yet missing something") I feel might make the brass players not like me. The transposed parts would be F# Major... don't think they'd like that at all. I know I wouldn't.
Anyway, it's late now, so I best go to bed.

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July 20, 2005 07:32

Got two hours of practice in today - I'm hoping to build it up each day - so probably 2 hours tomorrow, then three the next, then four by sunday. I worked on my Bach in the second hour. I'm not sure how I need to practice it - I'm definately looking forward to my lesson. It seems to me that I need a new insight to it - one that will suddenly make me understand and make some progress.

I want to do some more planning on my composition, i'm about to go do some. I'm thinking that a composition that is just music won't really work all that well, especially for orchestral works. It seems to me that I need to have some inspiration - something to write about, or to portray. IE Cappriccio Espagnole - a Russian depicting Spanish Music, or Indian Pacific, a piece by a West Australian Composer, which depicts the train that runs from Perth to Melbourne (I think it now goes up to Sydney as well).

But finding that inspiration - well that's a bit harder. I could write about an international event, or a place, or a story. But which one? There are so many.

And then I read Pauline's blog about her trip to the Butterfly House. And I think I could write about that. All the different types of butterflies, the noisy school children (obviously that would have to be the brass), the flowers, the mists. Things I think I can do well. I have my inspiration. I shall go compose.

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July 19, 2005 06:31

Grrr, didn't get to practice today. I was gonnado some this evening but I had to do the dishes. So many... i had to change the water three times :( My sister was supposed to be drying up, but she kept going in to watch the tv - a repeat episode of the simpsons no less. That was kind of annoying.

Anyway, work on my composition has started. I'm not fully sure of how it will evolve, i'm just working on ideas at the moment. I might not even start with what i've started with now, but it sounds "hobbit-like" as my girlfriend said. There's a repeating bass line (passacaglia like) in the celli and basses, then a lovely section with the winds - starting with two flutes, then later on adding an oboe or two. There's bits of dissonance, but with the repeated bass line, it doesn't sound to bad. I'm about to make my first revision in the last bar that i had written I had one flute playing a C natural and the other playing a C#. I hadn't intended these to sound together, but ended up that way. need to modify that.

Last Saturday I saw WASO play the Rite of Spring and the Dvorak Violin Concerto with Sarah Chang. I usually like to write and post a review after these concerts, but because this was a birthday present for my girlfriend, and we were staying in a hotel, I won't write anything except to say that the concerto was great, it was amazing to be able to see Sarah Chang live, and the Rite was brilliant. If you would like a copy of the review the West Australian gave of the friday night performance (apparently it was better on Saturday night) I'm happy to scan it in and send it to you as an e-mail. Just e-mail me with the request.

Well, I best be off - got some composition to do.

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July 14, 2005 06:19

Well it's been a while, but I'm baaaaaack. hehe

I've been getting back into the practicing schedule... a bit hard to after a break, but it's getting there. Luckily I still have another week to get back into it before semester starts again.

I've decided that I want to enter a composition competition. I've done a bit of work this holidays on a violin concerto, but I don't think it will work. So instead I've decided for something else. After looking around the web for various competitions, I've decided that this one grabs me the most:

Masterprize 2006!

For those of you that haven't heard of this, it is a brittish international composition competition that hopes to spark interest in new music by the general public. As part of the judging process, finalists get their works performed by the London Symphony Orchestra, recorded and distributed internationally via cover CD's on Grammophone and Classic FM magazines, and broadcast on various radio stations.

Now, I don't think I'll get that far, but I'm not doing it for that (although It would be nice). I'm doing it as a challenge to myself - setting myself a deadline (or having it set for me by a competition) and writing to a set of requirements.

I hope to spend around an hour a day on it from now until the end of semester, and then work my little way into a compositional frenzy!!! in an effort to get it finished, because I know that I won't be anywhere near finished by the end of semester.

But anyway, that's my plans. Let's see how we go.

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