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Mendy Smith

Work / Music Overlap & Bruch

June 12, 2008 at 5:29 AM

Probably one of my most interesting and funny lessons ever just finished tonight. I blogged before how many times I have conference calls right UP to lesson time. Well, I thought tonight would be the same. However lessons started a few minutes early and I was still on a conference call!!! So I figured... I'll put the phone on mute, set-up and tune-up, then the call should be over, and if it wasn't I'd excuse myself. My teacher is very understanding of me finishing calls while I'm walking into his studio.

Well, things were going quite well at first. Joel & I chuckled about extreme multi-tasking. I got my music out and he starting looking through it, then set-up my shoulder rest, tightened my bow and then applied a little rosin. I had to stop and answer a quick question on the call, and THOUGHT I put the phone back on mute. Joel gave me an A to tune, and I began tuning. On the other end on the line (phone), someone said "What is that noise? Is that a fire alarm going off somewhere???" OMG!!!! I hurridly put the phone on mute. I told Joel what just happened. We both laughed soooooo hard!!!!! "Chinese Fire Drill!" (I was on a call with China - again). I excused myself from the call.

We tuned again for real, both laughing about checking for fire alarms, then warmed up on a scale, both of us still chuckling. I'm soooo glad my teacher is so understanding and has a good sense of humor.

After warming up, and recovering my decorum, Joel asked me to play the Bruch instead of the Clarke. I had written to him earlier about picking this piece back up again for a play through and surprising myself with how much better it sounded. He wanted to hear it for himself. It wasn't a perfect performance by any means. I stumbled on a measure or two, and called a "do-over" on one measure of double-stops that I got totally wrong the first time. The verdict? His assesment was the same as my own. I had improved ALOT. It was much better than before, and that was with only practicing that piece ONCE since January.

The remainder of lessons was spent on tone control, dynamics, and shifting without just a hint of a slide or none at all. We never did get to the Clarke.

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