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Mendy Smith

Practicing After Work

December 8, 2007 at 4:55 AM

.... simply does not work! Tonight I drove home from work (a whopping 15 minutes!) and started work on the Bruch (after a few warm-up scales of course!). Major YUK! I had it in my head all day that I wanted to record it once all the way through again since I've made alot of progress recently. Then sit back and listen to it for the rest of the evening to figure out the spots that I'm not happy with so I can work on those more tomorrow.

Instead what happened was this...

I warmed up with a few scales and arpeggios, played Bruch through once, turned on the recorder, then one F-natural went sharp in the first line. Restart the recording.... get through the 1st page OK, then stumble at the end of the second page - a shift from 1st, to 3rd, then down a half step with string crossings all over the place. Restart the recording.... make it to page 3, totally hosed the first line of page 3. Restart the recording.... get to the final page, and that darned C-flat raises it's ugly head again!

On second thought, practicing after work with a recorder really highlighted the problem sections... I guess I know what I need to work on this weekend afterall! I still want to get at least one good recording in over the weekend to review.

I think I found a pianist to accompany me in the competition! One of my software engineer's wife is an excellent pianist (she teaches piano, and has accompanied other stringed palyers before). She has agreed (pending a peek at the piano part) to accompany me in the competition! The down-side is they are going on a Christmas holiday for two weeks, and we will only be able to get in MAYBE 2 practice sessions in together. Bruch Op. 85 is in the newly released Suzuki Viola Book #8 - there MUST be the piano CD out there somewhere! I'm not having any luck finding it yet, volume 8 may just be too new. (I am NOT using the Suzuki edition for the competition, the page turns are HORRID!)

From Karen Allendoerfer
Posted on December 8, 2007 at 2:38 PM
That "witching hour" when everyone comes home from work is indeed tough. I often end up practicing late at night, which works better at least until I get too tired.
From Stephen Brivati
Posted on December 10, 2007 at 5:58 AM
I don`t know what your work entails but in all @probability you needed to work on yourself a great dela more before evn picking up the instrument. Even if you are a really cool dude, which Im surewe you are, it is all too easy to absorb the negativity and stres sof peopel around us without realizing it, never mind our own. Couple that with the inefficient sue we make of our bodies, (just about all adults) and perhaps sitting in front of a computer . There is no way in hell you shoudl pick up the insturment. It reflects exacty the way you are at a given moment. 10 minutes meditation, -certainly- a hot shower (a psychiatrist/healer told me this one simple act washes off other peoples `crap` we have cloaked ourselves in during the day) a fairly gentle twenty minute stretch and then review of musicla goals would be a reaosibale prelude. It might not be enpough depending on the kind of work you do.

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