Chamber music keeps you honest.
I don't remember who said that to me, but it's always rung true. Playing in a small group, often one person on a part, keeps a musician on his or her toes. But it is not always easy to find the opportunity to play chamber music.
This week a discussion asking "Why are chamber music violinists not more famous?" also brought up the idea that students don't always get the chance to play chamber music, as "it takes their practice effort away from skyrocketing their way through the concerto repertoire so that they can get into Curtis someday. The second-class nature of chamber music is ingrained into the teaching culture...."
Is that true? How do students really feel about playing chamber music? How do teachers feel about its important? And professional and amateur violinists -- how do you feel about playing chamber music? Is it important to you? Is it something you get the chance to do? Is it something you love to do?
Certainly exploring the rich treasure that is the string quartet repertoire can be rewarding -- if one can find compatible partners in the endeavor. I greatly value the occasions when I can get together with colleagues and read quartets.
And even having a quartet that plays for weddings can be fun -- or it can be a complete nightmare involving endless Pachelbel and bridezillas.
What are your feelings about playing chamber music? Is it something you have had the chance to do? Is it something you wish to do? And if you have played in chamber groups, how do you feel about making this kind of music? Do you seek it out? Or do you avoid it due to things such as gig fatique or acrimonious personality clashes among members? Please participate in the vote and then share your thoughts.
Thank you to Elise Stanley for the Weekend Vote idea. If you have ideas for the Weekend Vote, they are welcome! Please e-mail me with your ideas.Tweet
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