Solo and Ensemble Music Festival 2023

February 21, 2023, 11:18 AM · This weekend, I participated in the Solo and Ensemble festival in my school district - not as a student anymore, but as a piano accompanist! This is an event I have participated and blogged about (a decade ago!) in the past, so I figured I should write a post on my first time returning to it since I graduated from high school.

The event is a chance for middle and high school students to play music they are learning on their instrument apart from in orchestra. They perform it for a judge and a couple of their friends or family who comes with them into the room, and then they get scored on how well they did, as well as get feedback from the judges about things they can do to improve. I remember getting a lot of useful advice from these - I mainly played from the Suzuki books, but I remember in my final year participating I played my "Little Snow-White" Violin Concerto, which was really special to play an original composition for the event.

Now as a piano accompanist, it was nice to be able to follow my students and support them in what they were playing. I thought overall, they did pretty well! There are some moments where they don't hold a half note for long enough and I have to quickly catch up to that, but otherwise it went well. There were a couple of Suzuki pieces I knew well from playing them before on the violin, so it was interesting playing through the piano parts now. I accompanied for seven students Saturday morning - hopefully now that I saw how this went, I might be able to accompany for more students next year!


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