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Jasmine Reese

Today's Practice

January 6, 2008 at 7:24 PM

So, after a few uneventful days of no practice, I finally had the chance to have a focused practice today. When my violin and I got back together the other day, I was still PMSing, so practice wasn't helping and I was just sawing at the violin.

Well, I started today's practice with the Francko Cadenza of Mozart's Third Violin Concerto. I worked on phrasing, touching on dynamics, bow distribution, and vibrato. I sounded great, no arrogance intended, not great in the Heifetz way, but you know, I was happy with myself. Which was pretty unusual, since for the last few days, I have been watching all these youtube videos of great violinists, amateur and professional. Usually after I watch a whole bunch of videos like that, I pick up my own violin afraid to hear the fact that I sound like crap in comparison. But today, even though the beautiful sounds that those wonderful violinists on youtube were making was still echoing in my head, I actually enjoyed my own sound.

Of course, today's practice gave painful birth to many questions. You know, the kind of questions that keep flashing in your mind, and if you continue to ignore them, the flashing only gets brighter and brighter. So, I am aware that the reason I sounded good today is because I had not practiced for a few days, besides intense mental practice. I watched all those videos of the greats. So, I wonder, before a performance, should I take a few days off to allow everything I have been learning to fully cement in my head? And, only warm-up on the performance day, or is that too risky?

Also, I hate it when I sound good for a couple of days and then all the sudden Ms. Negative Self-Criticism busts open my bedroom door and walks in with a grin on her evil face, snatches my violin from my hand and smashes it on the ground like some heavy metal rocker...or Jimi Hendrix. Then, I sound horrible again because my violin is all cracked and demolished. How do you keep that new refreshing sound? How can I take the results form today's practice present in every practice from here on out? I am so scared to wake up tomorrow and find that the old horrible sounding Jasmine is back with Ms. Negative on the side teaching me.

Besides all that, I must tell you, flat hair on the strings is way better than a tilted bow. I played today, making sure that I kept my bow flat on the strings and my sound was even more powerful than usual, not sure my mom will like that, but I did.

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