So there I was, poring over the Violin 2 piece for "Rejoice", a piece in the Christmas portion of Handel's Messiah. We've been practicing these pieces since March and, so far, though I can keep up with the sight-reading, my fingers don't always keep up with the running notes. I'm just a beginner, and an adult beginner at that, but I don't really believe in all the hype about the limitations of the adult beginner. In my humble opinion, I think the limitation of the adult beginner has more to do with his or her lack of time to practice (being so concerned with work and other matters of the daily grind).
Anyway, the musical director announces, "Guys, I just got news today that we will not be holding Messiah here in church by December. We will be staging it at the Meralco Theatre." Whoa... I nearly fell off my chair. The Meralco Theatre is a major concert venue. No, it's not Carnegie Hall, but for a beginner like me it might as well be. The director added, "Oh, and everyone will have a microphone (or tansducer)."
So there I sat, mulling over these facts, and how I could possibly deserve to play Handel in a concert venue with a seating capacity of about 2,000. From last year's musicale, in which I didn't play, I remember the orchestra box being so cold - the airconditioning can freeze your fingers. I started thinking of what to wear. Should I buy an evening gown with fur? In a tropical country, where the heck would I use that again?
Crazy, why am I thinking of what to wear? Can I even play these pieces by December? I have no choice. I have to play. I'm not backing out of this chance. Let me muster all the faith that i can, and practice as often as I can, and maybe I will make it in time to feel confident as the curtains open.
One of the things I've realized as a beginner is that violin playing has a lot to do with confidence, with inner strength and courage, as much as with many hours of practice. I play best when my spirit is serene. Right now I can truly say that my insides are as shaky as a bamboo tree in a hurricane.
More entries: April 2008
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