Wednesday, December 20, 2006

What goes through my mind during a concert

Here are some artistic impressions from a concert I recently attended which featured Schubert's "Trout Quintet" for violin, viola, cello, bass and piano. I was having difficulty focusing.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Earplugs, anyone?

I just got done with our last University Symphony Orchestra concert for the semester. I walked out of the hall feeling like I'd been covered in emotional vomit, but in the best possible sense. Explanation: Verdi, Rachmaninoff and Respighi. It was fun and oh so dramatic and exhuberant and LOUD. It can be very gratifying to play as loud as possible, especially with a double brass section (complete with a special crack team of off-stage trumpets), an organ, and ten percussionists backing you up. The opening of "Feste Romane" is especially brash--it's about the Romans throwing Christians to the lions. Very apt for Ann Arbor. The highlight of the evening, though, was definitely the solo pianist's tux. It was cream-colored with crazy silver embroidering on the lapels and cuffs, topped off with tennis shoes sans socks. Sometimes I feel jealous that guys are the ones who get to wear tuxes--there are so many possibilities for being creative.

That was just the beginning. The conductor hosted a party at the local pizza joint (outlandishly named "Pizza House") for the orchestra and friends. These parties consist of me sitting at a table nursing a cold one (rootbeer) and watching everyone slowly, or quickly, get trashed. I stayed for the whole party this time, which I've never been done before, and was one of the last to leave. On my way out I got a very emotional (and odoriferous) hug from one of the violists and got to see our conductor at his most inebriated. Interesting thing, alcohol.

Oh, and I've decided I want to be some crazy archive lady who putters around in the musty, dimly-lit basement of some library amongst stacks of dusty old books and wears the same cardigan to work each day and has strange socks and has some kind of nervous tic from not getting out enough. Or a monkey. Yeah.

Do you think polka dots have anything to do with polka the dance?

Monday, December 11, 2006

More of the same...

I didn't mean for that last post to be so short, but I was at school and the computer keyboards there su..... um, are bad. (I'm trying to stop using the words "crap" and "suck".)

So I had this epiphany over Thanksgiving that I really don't want to be a professional musician after all. It was the culmination of many years of indecision. It has always seemed like such a difficult choice to make, but now that I've actually chosen to not be a musician it seems like the most obvious thing in the world. In retrospect, I can clearly tell that I was never cut out to be a performer, nor will I ever be. It's just not in my blood or my soul or my heart or my fingers or my gut or whatever body or spiritual part would be best to reference. The thought of not having to make my way in the music world has brought a profound, almost tangible feeling of relief. It seems like my life is my own again and freedom and liberty are in the air. It feels like I've been liberated from a tyrannical, oppressive regime and am free to make of my life what I choose. Yes, I am getting a bit dramatic and I don't mean to make music out to be some kind of evil force. I'm truly grateful for and humbled by all the wonderful experiences and opportunities I've been blessed with. It's much more than most people get in a lifetime. But I can't deny that I feel so so so much happier knowing that I don't have make a living with it.

So, that being said, I'd like to announce that I'm going to go to library school, a fact that most of you already know. I most likely won't be going next fall--I think I'd like to take a year off from school. Hopefully I can make some money and maybe buy a car or something. We'll see. I'll keep you posted, pun totally intended. Sorry for such a solemn, un-entertaining post

Violist no more

Yes, the rumors buzzing about the country are true: Leslie is not going to pursue a career in music any more. I, for one, feel so terribly wonderful about this news that I wonder why she stayed with it for so long in the first place. That is a mystery for the ages.