Gods on the Ceiling (Tuesday is the longest day)

It’s cool.  I love teaching for 5 1/2 hours after 4 hours of rehearsal.  My entire body aches.  I feel like I must be 90 years old.

I get to do it all over again tomorrow too!  My violin mark (on my neck) is a disaster and I think there is something seriously wrong with my shoulder.  Or there’s nothing wrong with my shoulder that a few weeks away from the violin (or maybe even days) won’t fix.  I don’t know.  I’ll find out soon.  Ice.  Ice is my friend.

But…Brahms.

Read today’s Chamber Project Blog entry!

(from the blog:)

Finally, our violinist Hannah answers a few questions about the program.

What is your favorite piece on the program and why or what do you love about the piece you are playing? I am torn between the Brahms Clarinet Quintet and the Martinu Duo.  Brahms is one of my absolute favorite composers, but (sorry Dana!) the [Brahms] Violin Sonatas are my first love.  Quintets are tough for a self centered violinist like me, because I have to share the spotlight more than I’d like.  Seriously though, the piece is absolutely genius, but I almost more prefer listening than playing (and yes, it’s been on in my car for the past several weeks!).  The Martinu on the other hand is so much fun to play.  I’ve already performed it in March with Laura, and I’m really looking forward to playing it again.

What is the most challenging aspect of this program?  Well, playing Brahms well is a weakness of mine.  Perhaps it’s a weakness for everyone…when he writes sotto voce I always freak out because I feel like a gorgeous soft sound is just hard to do.  I’m much better at loud and bombastic!  The other really challenging thing is this one run of octaves in the last movement of the Martinu.  It’s one of the most difficult technical passages I’ve had to play in a long time, and it happens twice.  I’ve been practicing it every day, but it just never sounds the way it should.  (Octaves, meaning two of the same notes, but one higher and one lower, and I have to use my first finger and my pinky finger while playing on two different strings and I have to move or shift my hand for EACH note.  Fast.)

Is there a ‘magical moment’ for you in this music? You’ll just have to watch my face to see.  There’s a place in the Hayden when the saxophone enters and it just cracks me up, the effect is so cool. Brahms is full of magical moments, though I have a couple favorites, like I said, watch my face and you’ll know…and I love the second movement of the Martinu–it’s so dark and icy, and reminds me a lot of some of my favorite Shostakovich Symphonies.

Read more here!

Look at the picture.  The far left corner.  Yes, that’s our lunch.  Jimmy John’s and a Diet Coke.

rehearsnig at tofa

Oh, and there’s a lot of blog entries going around about life in the orchestral world and such.  This is mainly in light of the mess the Louisville Orchestra is in right now.  I wrote a lovely post around a year ago that you should read if you haven’t (alert, shameless self-promotion ahead!)

Orchestra auditions for non-musicians.

It’s a tough world out there, readers.  I can’t actually afford to live on the salary I make working my butt off.  Or at least, as my parents put it, in the manner to which I am accustomed.  I feel like I’m constantly underwater, failing my students, just barely getting by, but yet if I had more students to make more money…I’d just be doing worse.  And it’s not like these concerts are paying the bills.

They could be though.  Did you know that Chamber Project St Louis is a non-profit?  You can make a tax deductible contribution to us!  I’d recommend you do so, and if you do you get your name in the program, plus I will totally pretend to be your friend 😉

Okay, I made that last part up.  (Don’t worry!  I won’t pretend to be your friend.)  But if you are looking to support your local arts community you couldn’t find a better way.  We give a variety of concerts throughout the year, many free, most are very inexpensive, and do our best to educate and entertain our audiences.  If you are seriously interested go to the website and read up on it.  The other members aren’t as crazy as I am either.

Let me just quote from last year’s blog post:

You won’t love what you do most days, but sometimes you will love it so much that all the pain and suffering is worthwhile.

And then just for fun…

“All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.” –J.R.R. Tolkien (The Fellowship of the Ring)

(I’m aware that April is the cruelest month for me…please don’t call in the men in white jackets.  I’m simply worn out.  June is just around the corner.)

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