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Natasha Marsalli

Flamenco and the Symphonie Espagnol

May 16, 2007 at 3:51 PM

Our last orchestra concert of the year on Sunday was a great way to finish out the season; three solo performances, chamber music, the last movement of Dvorak's 9th, A Pirates of the Carribean Medley, and Copland's Hoedown ended our year with a bang! As soon as I get a recording of our quartet playing, I'll post it. We sounded very good despite countless program changes and cancelled rehearsals. On top of it all, I get to brag about my boyfriend, Sam, who won the first ever Joyce Anne Vitelli Scholarship- that comes with $10,000 in scholarships! Now about an eighth of his tuition for CIM is covered...:)

One of the soloists played the first movement of the Symphonie Espagnol, the same piece I'll be playing with the Naples Philharmonic in the fall. Those of you who are female will recognize the dilemma I had when the soloist was wearing a red dress...that absolutely means that I cannot wear a read dress, because that would violate the laws of formal attire creativity. But the Symphonie Espagnol is such a fiery piece that it *needs* a red dress. My dad had the solution; buy a flamenco dress.

At first I laughed, but then I started looking at these things...and not only are they conservatively modest and reasonably priced...they are pretty darn cool. I found one in particular that floats my boat:

I also found some awesome rose hair-combs and etc. that would look cool. Dad also suggested that I clink castanets and dance during my rests, but I think that would be going a bit too far. :)

I'm using the Symphonie Espagnol movement as a polished piece as I go teacher-visiting this year. So far I've scheduled lessons with Mr. Alex Kerr in Indiana and Mr. Yehonatan Berick in Michigan, and I'm currently making arrangements with Linda Cerone from Cleveland. Hopefully I can fit in a few more people as I travel the midwest, but, unfortunately the majority of them are out of town (out of the country, actually). I may try to get ahold of Mr. Cardenes at Carnegie-Mellon, but we'll see. In the meantime, it's practice, practice, practice, on the Lalo, Bach, and Paganini. I'm a little embarressed about my Bach; it's really rather atrocious, but perhaps the Paganini and Lalo, which, if I do say so myself, are coming along dandily, will make up for my lack of Baroque skills.

So, on Saturday, my mother, my sister, and myself are going to travel to all these colleges. Wish me luck in my wanderings!


From Pieter Viljoen
Posted on May 16, 2007 at 4:02 PM

I've seen several soloists wear red dresses, like Sarah Chang. She has even worn purple and pink ones. No one really cares... I mean, go look at Jennifer Koh on YouTube in the Tchaikovksy competition, I'm not a girl and I don't know much about dresses, but they were pretty awful.

Those are all great teachers, I think any one of them would suit your needs quite well.

From Karin Lin
Posted on May 16, 2007 at 6:26 PM
I LOVE the idea of playing the Symphonie Espagnole in a flamenco dress!! Good luck in your teacher visits. What Bach is it that you're working on?
From Maura Gerety
Posted on May 16, 2007 at 6:49 PM
Awesome idea about the flamenco dress! That would look great, go for it! :)
From Sydney Menees
Posted on May 16, 2007 at 10:47 PM
Good luck!

Ooh, I love the dress idea. Do it!

From Karen Allendoerfer
Posted on May 17, 2007 at 1:34 AM
That is a great dress! I can't believe Maura and I are actually agreeing on a dress . . .
From Pieter Viljoen
Posted on May 17, 2007 at 4:04 AM
Yes, it is a great dress. Perhaps I shall buy one too.
From Julie C.
Posted on May 17, 2007 at 4:37 AM
HAHA, Pieter. Yea, I like the dress idea, too! So original!
From Natasha Marsalli
Posted on May 17, 2007 at 1:58 PM
Wow...lots of comments. That makes me happy. :)

Julie, do you mean my dress idea is original, or the idea of Pieter in a dress? Because personally, I think the latter is even more so...:)

Pieter, my dilemma is that another soloist, playing the exact same piece and movement in the same concert hall with the same orchestra wore a red dress. If I were to go wear a red dress with the same piece, movement, orchestra, etc. it wouldn't look good. It's a rule. :)

From Pauline Lerner
Posted on May 17, 2007 at 5:50 PM
That's a gorgeous flamenco dress, but most of the red parts won't show unless you're dancing. I don't know whether you intend to dance while you're playing your violin solo, and it wouldn't be fair to dance and show off while other people are playing.
From Maura Gerety
Posted on May 17, 2007 at 9:58 PM
Karen, I hope that wasn't intended to be as snide as it sounded. I agree, it is a great dress. Did you think I wouldn't like it because it's not revealing enough?

Pieter, I'd like to see that....

From Ruth Kuefler
Posted on May 18, 2007 at 4:14 PM
Oooh, a flamenco dress - what a cool idea! That fits the Lalo so perfectly. The only downside might be those sleeves - I bet they’re pretty uncomfortable to play in. You know that gold dress I wore? Even with stretch lace on top and keyhole back, it was a little restrictive (which is not so great for Lalo, as I’m sure you know). I’m sure that solid satin is much worse. So anyway, just take my advice make sure you can really move in it when you try it on! :)

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