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Kelsey Z.

June 25, 2005 at 3:32 PM

I did it! I passed! I passed my grade 5 RCM (Royal Conservatory of Music) music history exam. That is the last music history exam I'll ever have to write from them in order to obtain my ARCT (Associate of the Royal Conservatory of Toronto) in violin performance (or the Teacher's ARCT should I chose to do that at some point). It had been nearly 5 weeks since I wrote it to when I found my mark out. *big sigh of relief* Now I'm just anxious to get the actual exam back and see where I gained and lost marks.

Well it's been a hectic week. Sort of. It started off hectic then got relaxed then will be hectic again soon!

Last weekend, on Saturday I had an early morning to go and catch a greyhound bus. I was going to visit a good friend, fellow musician and conductor. Her orchestra (a youth orchestra...or junior orchestra I guess because there are adults and younger students!) was performing a piece I wrote for them back around Christmas time. The work was premiered in May but I wasn't able to go, so this time nothing was getting in the way of me going. I got to go! It was well over 4 hours later, and at 11:30am that I arrived at my destination! I met up with my friend and her roomate and we went for a walk before heading back to my friends place. She had a violin she wanted me to try out and some work to do, so I got some practicing done and she got her work done and I got to try out a rather nice instrument! After that it was off to the concert! When it came time for my piece to be played, I was actually kind of nervous. The orchestra did a great job though! They took it at the exact tempo that had been what I heard in my head and it sounded like it did in my head when I wrote it! Yay!!!!! I actually had to take the score out the night before and read through it on the bus a bit to refresh my mind as to what I had written. You'd think I would have remembered, but I guess not. Oh well!! It was hugely exciting for me to get to hear it and have it conducted by such a good friend.

It was a late-ish night that night. After the concert we went for dinner and then my friend had her horses that she wanted to enter in a horse show the next morning and move back to her parents place for the summer. So we went up to the ranch that they were on and I helped her pack up her stuff (along with some of her family who had brought up her horse-trailer and a truck to cart the horses with) and get the horses ready. So by time we had finished that and gotten back to her place it was about 11pm. We went to bed as promptly as possible and then the wake up call was at 4:30am. Those few hours of sleep were good while I had them! We went and collected up the horses, got them in the trailer and were on the road by 6! We arrived at the rodeo grounds where the horse show was at about 8 or shortly after, in time to get the horses registered, and saddled up for a 8:30 showing. After the first class (about 9am), I got a ride over to the bus depot to bus back home. I got back just before 1pm, in time to invade my Grandparents house for food and a shower. I didn't really think losing an extra 15-20 minutes sleep to shower when I had to get up at 4:30 was a nice option so I decided to do that at my grandparents place. A bite of lunch, a shower and a bit of practicing later, my violin teacher showed up!

I had a concert only an hour after that. My teacher and I were doing some Bartok duets together at it. We had only sightread (well she knows them....I don't) through them together a couple days prior and so we figured rehearsing them again was a good idea. We spent a few minutes putting them together and ran them through a couple times and then headed over to the hall.

At the hall the music school I teach at was having their annual faculty and student recital. I got to be both a teacher and a student in that recital! My two Suzuki groups played. I was very impressed with them and proud of them! One priceless moment was when one of the kids arrived and walked across the stage to where I was to unpack and the look on his face as he peered out at the empty hall was priceless! But yes, all my students did exceptionally well and I couldn't have been more happy and proud of them. Hopefully they were all pleased with themselves too. I then got a bit of a break after having been the first couple of spots in the recital my students. I listened to a couple of kids and then went out into the hallway and talked to a fellow teacher for awhile and got a drink. Then I went back because, suprise suprise, I had to play again! This time it was the Bartok duets. We did three of them. Two went really well. One I kind of screwed up a tinsy bit, but only the people who knew it well would have known that I had made a mistake. Immediately following that I played Lark Ascending.

There's something to really love and cherish about playing a piece like that with a 9ft Steinway to back you up and in one the most acousticly friendly halls around. There are so many quiet and flautando bits yet you don't have to even try and it just fills the hall and carries. It's a great feeling. It was father's day too that day and to have my Dad as my pianist made it extra special! The length of the work flew by and before I knew it I had played my last note. As I bowed, a small child ran up to the stage from the audience, it was my 4 year old student with a bouqet! Her Mom helped her up onto the stage and she gave me a hug and the boquet!

The final portion of the concert was devoted to orchestral music played by the chamber orchestra. I dubbed in as a second and third violinist in the two pieces. It was a lot of fun!

After the concert as I was saying goodbye to my students it hit me again that I'm not going to see these kids for awhile. And who knows, come fall, not all of them may want to come back. I hope they all come back! It's been awesome to see them all grow and learn so much in the past months and it's been a pure joy to teach them. I always leave the music school feeling satisfied and truly content after a good day of teaching. Yes, there are those lessons that leave you frustrated and wanting to peel your nails off, but the rewards like when I saw my students walk out on stage in their suzuki groups and heard them play, it was really rewarding for me. I'm going to miss teaching while I'm away this summer, but hopefully I'll come back a better teacher and them renewed, refreshed and ready to learn again!

From Danielle Gauthier
Posted on June 26, 2005 at 2:45 AM
I don't think I've seen that many acronyms since enrolling in RMTS a year ago :) .

That's great, wish i could say the same, but being a (surprisingly non-nocturnal) High-school student on break, I haven't taken many fancy tests.
Again, Congrats.

From Scott 68
Posted on June 26, 2005 at 2:23 PM
congrats you worked hard and you should be very proud

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