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Mendy Smith

Quartet - Quintet

May 9, 2008 at 8:25 AM

Tonight was the first quartet practice I've had in a long time. My group has been on "spring break" for over a month due to scheduling conflicts of one sort or another. We also switched cellist - our previous cellist had too many schedule conflicts, so he recommended a friend of a friend.

Tonight was quartet practice with our new cellist at his house. We started with the Motzart dissonant quartet. His teenaged daughter lounged on the couch listening to us play while she studied. After we completed the quartet, she asked her father if she could play with us. Turns out she plays both viola and violin. Our second violinst also plays viola.

After some discussion, she goes to her room and brings out her viola and violin. Our regular second violinist and the cellist's daughter drew straws on who would play second viola. Our regular second violinist won, and got to play the 2nd viola part (violas rule!). Out comes the Motzart Quintet. The violinist and I were unsure of her playing ability. However that question was soon ansered after the first measures. She is good! Very good!

This young lady played with a passion. She looked to her father for tempo and rhythm guidance. It was a bit strange having the cellist take the lead on the tempo and queues, but it seemed to work. It was apparent that father and daughter have been playing music together for years and that the daughter looks to the father as most others would towards the 1st violinist.

So now I have to question: are we a quartet or a quintet now?

From Paul Grant
Posted on May 9, 2008 at 9:04 AM
I'm so jealous of all this chamber music you get to play. i've been in the university at a music major for 5 years and i've never got to perform quartets!
From Bernadette Hawes
Posted on May 9, 2008 at 2:31 PM
Part of me is a bit jealous, though I'm so thrilled you are able to have this fun. I would give my eye teeth to be able to play with other adult beginners. All the best, Mendy, keep on going for it!

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