August 17, 2012 at 8:11 AMSaturday: morning sectionals at Kenai Christian, followed by a full-orchestra run-through after lunch. It would be a threesome, if I could convince Susie to come. "We really need to figure out some bowings," I explained, "and I know I need the extra time on my part. But I'm not going if you're not going. And I don't get up to an alarm, so excuse me if I'm a little late."
"Oh, you'd better not be late!"
Ten o'clock, we all showed up, not really sure where violists should assemble. Arbitrarily claiming a Sunday school room as our own, we arranged the stands and unpacked. This time, I sat my coffee cup on the table behind me, out of harm's way. "I'm not a morning person," I warned Michael. To ease into things, we warmed up with the Mozart.
The Divertimento in D Major seemed harmless enough. Instead of long, intricate sixteenth note passages typical to first violin repertoire, long rows of identical eighth notes took up a majority of the first page. Still, the part came riddled with interesting sections that needed bowings. We played it through, stopping to discuss areas in question. Michael answered with his own ideas: down-bow for emphasis, then up-up to even it out. Let's get rid of this backward bowing here... And this, we could take it up-up like it's written, or we could accentuate the unique bass note here, play it down for emphasis--but it depends on whether you want that or not.
Intrigued, I nodded in agreement. Here was someone who gave me permission--no, orders!--to ignore the uncomfortable bowings prescribed by the editor in pursuit of something more musically aesthetic. I liked his style! One by one, we took out the hiccups and proceeded to the next movement. By the time we reached lunch break, I felt like we had our repertoire running more like a well-oiled machine.
Susie had to go home. After lunch, I'd be taking the stand with Michael for the full orchestra run-through.
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