May 2005

May 31, 2005 07:04

We played the Walloomsac Farmer's Market on Saturday, the first of the season. We really lucked out on the weather all weekend -- there was rain predicted for days straight, and then the morning came, the sun full and bright. Hooray!

I'm afraid I was a little rusty on some of the tunes and sets. I've been so busy practicing (and performing!) for the symphony concert (over now, and with compliments from the audience, so all is well), and then for the Dorset musical, Once Upon a Mattress, and also for the Kinhaven Chamber Music weekend which I'll be attending in June! Just no chance to do more than run through some of my favorite tunes, without actually practicing any of the other sets. I'll have to get more organized about my practice, now. I've got two dances coming up on sequential weekends and then Kinhaven (I went last year, and what an incredible experience! I highly recommend it to anyone interested in chamber music). Then in July I'm performing with Kelly Moore somewhere over in N.Y., and need to work up that repertoire. And, in between it all, I'm spending most of a week at the Origins game industry convention in Ohio. I guess I'll have to pick up a practice mute so that I can actually bring my violin and play in the hotel room. Or, I just don't bring it (I'd hate for anything to happen to it). If last year is any indication, I won't have any time for it anyway, as sad as that may be. But, I'm certainly looking forward to a particular brew-pub in Columbus that has the most amazing strong ale... mmm. Almost creamy!

Found out that a friend has actually discovered this blog. (Hi, Rick!) Luckily, I haven't written anything unkind... ;) Rick is a fantastic banjo player (and I'm not just saying that 'cause he might read it). He turned up one day at the market last year, and much to our delight has kept coming. We're hoping he'll come up to Sandgate, too. :)

The next Sandgate session is coming up next Tuesday, speaking of that. Last session we didn't end up at the schoolhouse after all, but this time we should. It was a nice small session, with everyone contributing new things and just enjoying all the variety of music we could come up with. I'm looking forward to continuing with it!

I'm still enjoying my new violin, and have begun getting some real compliments on my playing -- with far more frequency than before. Some of it is just that I am continuing to improve, but even people that know me and my playing are now commenting. In convincing me to look for a new instrument, Lilo had told me a story about her husband, a concert violist. He had had a viola that he just loved ; smooth and silky under the ear, but very muted in the concert hall. Finally, he was convinced to buy a new one -- one that would carry. Suddenly, his career took off.

So, I think I spent my money well. :)

Back to work, so I can afford it! I've grand plans to buy a cheap student cello, too, so I can play more chamber music with friends who are violinists. :)

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May 3, 2005 08:21

Tonight, we're rockin' the schoolhouse. :) In a little town in the middle of nowhere, there's an old schoolhouse from the 18th century or so (maybe as new as the 19th) that's been empty for a very long time. The folks there have been wanting to do something with it, and someone started renovating it into a little museum, but then they moved out of the country and it's empty again. Well, tonight it'll be full. We're starting up a new folk session there, hopefully to continue all summer (it's got no heat, so winter will be a little cold). I'm really looking forward to it, since it's pretty close to me and the fellow who wanted it is really fun to play with (guitarist).

You know how you play together with some folks, and you keep the same beat and all, but you just don't quite connect? Like you're not really listening to each other? It seems like most of the time, that's what it is. Only a very few people are different -- really listen, and respond, and lead so that you can follow, and follow so that you can lead. It's such a subtle thing that it's hard to notice so much when it's missing. Well, this fellow has it, and when we got together for the first time a couple of weeks ago, we played up a storm. I've got grand plans, now. :) We'll see how it all works out, but it should be really fun.

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