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Mendy Smith

2011 Review / 2012 Preview

December 27, 2011 at 2:02 AM

This past year was one of introspection and discovery in regards to my music.

Unlike last year, I rarely performed. I took a long pause and gave much thought into what I was doing and why. Instead of delving into the Z-A by 50 goal, the past year has been spent on refining technique. Much time has been spent developing an arm vibrato, my ear for a refined intonation, addressing various aches and pains, and getting my inner musician who really wants to sing out of the closet. Only recently have I begun starting to think about tackling a few new pieces.

I did not play in an orchestra, but instead played chamber music with friends, performing from time to time - three times to be exact, OK 4 if you count the pit orchestra for charity. I don't know if I will go back to playing in an orchestra this coming year, but I do not think so (except for the pit). Chamber music is more my cup of tea.

I started with a new teacher this year who is as intense as I am. Etudes and studies haven't been this much fun and rewarding in years. After nearly a year together, we are just now starting to figure out how I learn and putting together a 'game-plan'.

I met and played with two v.commer's at Interlochen this summer. I hope to see both of them again this coming summer, and with luck maybe a few new ones as well.

As for 2012, I plan more or much the same, putting my focus on chamber music and technique. I'd really love to have this new arm-vibrato feeling more natural and hone my intonation even further so that Hilda rings each and every time we sing together. I'm starting to get the hang of this "phrasing" and "style" thing that I want to explore more.

As for my Z-A goal, I'll be continuing on but at a slower pace. I'm still working on a new "H" and have another "V" lined up, two pieces on opposite ends of the style scale. I may pull out the "U" I haven't played in nearly 30 years after that.

Who knows....

From Tom Holzman
Posted on December 27, 2011 at 3:19 PM
Very interesting. We like to think about life as attaining goals, but, as you are discovering, in life, and that includes our music, what is important is the journey more than the destination. So, it is good to keep having goals, but, as your blog shows, it is probably more important to take the opportunities that come your way and revise your outlook along the way. Best for 2012. I know it will be a good year for you.

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