On the other end

I made it! I made it through several weeks of craziness, and I had a fantastic concert!

I worked hard, I spent months and months learning and perfecting the piece I was to perform, and the work paid off. I felt that the concert was one of my best performances ever, and that I was very happy with how it went.

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Me and Wendy Lea, conductor. I’m so glad she gave me this opportunity and had a blast working with her!

I want to play the piece again! I felt like so much of my violin playing until now was just leading up to me learning and performing Astor Piazzolla’s Four Seasons! And I want to wear that dress again…it was amazingly flattering!

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My parents came out to see it, several friends and quite a few students did too. It was really a blast, even though it was also very stressful and I know that I had a hard time dealing with the stress leading up to it. I couldn’t have done this nearly as well without Louie’s support, and I’m so grateful for him.

But now it’s DONE and it went great, and I’m happy, and there will be a video and more photos, and now…now what? What’s the next big thing?

Right now, it’s just a few days getting back into the normal life, and getting ready for a Perseid Quartet concert next weekend, and going to visit April in Atlanta this weekend. And being more relaxed. The next few months (until Christmas) are still very busy, but the stress level is WAY down.

And yay for many of the election results last night. Perhaps our country can turn some things around. Perhaps we aren’t too far gone. Perhaps all the hard work people have put in will pay off even more.

Other photos from the past few weeks:

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We went on the radio with Jim Doyle to promote our concert. Mostly we talked about my love of the color purple…

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Playing with the Illinois Symphony. I’ve learned and relearned quite a lot between playing in a quartet, in an orchestra, doing some improv in a group, and playing as a soloist with an orchestra, all in the past 30 days! Each group requires different skills, different sound, different WAYS to play the violin, and I’m so glad I’ve been saying yes so much! (I say this TODAY, since I had the morning off to run errands and all the stress is currently behind me or in the distant future…) In any case, I didn’t realize how much I missed playing in orchestra, and I’m glad I signed on for a few concerts this year. I always have a lot of teacher guilt when I have to miss or reschedule lessons, but I have to admit: performing is my first love. And more performing makes me a better teacher, and a happier person.

I want to do some more things now: I want to blog more, I want to get back to running (I’ve taken two weeks off, and now I’m taking a little more time off because I had to get a weird thing removed from the back of my leg, but I should be good early next week), I want to focus on some broader technique ideas on the violin in order to help my students more, and I’m thinking of doing 100 days of practice on the viola when I finish up my current challenge. (Follow me on Instagram!) I’m not making it 100 days in a row, but I’m allowing for travel in between—I took off for our Smoky Mountain trip, for a day when I cut my thumb, and I’ll miss this weekend because I’m not bringing my fiddle with me, but it’s been a great challenge nonetheless. I keep meaning to work on the viola more (I’m technically the viola instructor at one of the colleges I teach at) and I think the 100 days challenge will be a fun way to push myself. It’ll be harder because I won’t be bringing the viola with me as much, but it doesn’t require much time, only consistency.

I also want to reconnect with friends that I’ve left behind over the past few months. It’s been a hard fall! And I want to get back into more involvement with the resistance movement. I’ve been too busy and too stressed to show up.

Who am I kidding, it’s not over yet. Atlanta, quartet concert, lots of gigs, lots of teaching, recitals, juries…I don’t suddenly have loads of time. But this is the life I’ve chosen, and I’ve realized over the past few weeks, this is the life I want! At least a lot of the aspects of it Smile

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