So, my income comes exclusively from teaching violin and viola in Sacramento, not performing. Perhaps this is why I've wondered why it's SO HARD to get a few capable (professional-level) string musicians together to play chamber music for fun. Yes, "just for fun."
Currently, I occasionally play in a piano quartet (with my luthier as the cellist!) but I'm really looking to expand into other types of chamber music and to play with other people. To me, it's not just about the specific music I've played, but also who I've played it with. Every piece is a unique and organic experience each time it is played, and this is further amplified when playing with different musicians; like adding a different spice to a familiar dish. Of course, everyone knows you don't add paprika to Mozart; but maybe to Beethoven.
I'm also hoping to be able to experiment with the idea of "open rehearsals" instead of just formal concerts. For me, it's a way of sharing excellent music for free and for creating a brand new type of environment where the layman (my students and the students of others) can see how professional musicians practice and rehearse. A mix between the casual nature of playing for fun, and the formality that accompanies the tradition and training that goes along with being at a professional level.
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