Saturday, September 23, 2006

Hi! I'm Chucky. Wanna play??

For me the hardest part about being an adult learner is not having any one else to play with. I don't quite understand why playing with others is so important to me. It's not that I don't enjoy playing by myself. I guess it's that I know it would be so much more fun to make music with others.

I meant to make this post last weekend because I had a particularly bad music week. Recall that last Monday (not this one that just passed) I was sad because I realized I would have been going to my first Wind Ensemble rehearsal had I gotten in. Then comes my clarinetist friend to the rescue! Our trumpet player friend (of annoying concert fame) was getting married this Saturday and all his musician friends wanted to play at the wedding. Clarinetist told me he'd tell the "director" to write a part in for me. There was to be a rehearsal the day before but that was the day of the farewell dinner for the girl I replaced at work. Clarinetist said I could just sight read the part at the wedding. Fine.

So we drive 1.5 hours into Connecticut with Luna the Oboe in tow. I was speeding to make sure I got there early enough to read through my parts a few times. I can't even explain my dismay when I get there to find out that "director" decided not to include me after all since I didn't make it to rehearsal. Pfffft! I sat there and pouted throughout the entire ceremony. How irreverent of me. I then proceeded to get quite tipsy (on wine) at the reception. That was kind of fun while it lasted. When I got home I slept like a log.

The following day (last Sunday) was supposed to be the first meeting of the "New York Amateur Chamber Music Players Group". I had signed up at and expressed my interest in chamber music. A few weeks ago someone finally organized and official group and set up a meeting for the 17th. Thankfully I hadn't gotten my hopes up too high because the founder of the group is MIA and the meeting did not occur.

And so another Monday came and went as I wallowed deeper and deeper in self-pity. I started feeling like an ugly doll that nobody wanted. Oh yeah, and I was PMSing too.

Luckily, Fr. D saved the day. We met up on Thursday to play our duets and had a ton of fun! I'm also set to meet T again next week and hopefully she can get me back on track. I think I'm almost out of the post-audition blues. Hopefully she will give me new stuff to work on or at least help me organize my practice time better. Hmm, I may even work on a reed or two this weekend!

Well I don't want this post to be entirely sad so here's a pic of the cute kittens living in my basement:


Pattyoboe said...

Hilda, I don't see the kittens!

Is the group you mentioned the same as "Amateur Chamber Music Players"? ( Just checking!

I do hope you find something that works for you. I know we have a chamber music thing here in California ( that seems to work well for a lot of people. I have occasionally coached a group and I've loved it!

Hilda said...

Oops! I am going to post the pics now. My hosting site was acting up last night.

The group I mentioned on the post is not related to ACMP and will likely never get off the ground due to disorganization. However I did get an email about an ACMP group called "Chamber Music Associates". They are having an open house on October 11th. They will form up as many groups as they can from the people who show up and then you meet weekly with a coach for $20 a session (2 hours on Wednesdays). I'm going to email the organizer this week to ask a few questions.

If that doesn't work out then maybe for the Spring semester I will go to the first school I took oboe lessons with. They too have adult chamber programs but the price is steeper.

That's cool that you got to coach a group and actually enjoyed it. I was afraid that the coaches would be bored with us LOL!

Pattyoboe said...

I wasn't bored at ALL! Believe it or not, I go into these things a bit nervously; I'm afraid the players will think I'm one big fake or something!

In any case, it is great fun, and dealing with non-professionals is a joy, as everyone is there because they LOVE to play, not because they HAVE to play.

At the last one I coached a former colleague (a violinist) came in. To PLAY. Obviously she thought the groups worthwhile and was more than ready to play with them. If I ever had to drop playing professionally I think I'd joing immediately. Good people. Fewer egos than on stage. And much less pressure. But still a great desire to play well and make fine music. :-)

And your kittens are adorable. As is mommy cat.

soundtrk said...

Wow, we must be related or something. This isn't the first time that we've decided to blog about similar topics at the same time, I think!

Finding people to sing with is at a higher priority right now for me than taking lessons. I'm still working on finding suitable groups, just like you.

Hilda said...

I guess we're kindred spirits :-)

I hope your search goes better than mine. Or maybe we'll end up getting lucky at the same time.

Guanaco said...

We adult learners seem to reach a point in our musical studies when we want to play with others - others who share our passion as well as our general skill level.

After ten months studying the cello, I recently started playing with a small, local beginners string orchestra. I'm the only cello, so I really have to do my best. Already, after three rehearsals, we have enjoyed that sweet satisfaction of playing through a couple pieces more or less at the same time and with some sense of cohesiveness.

Don't quit trying. There's got to be something out there.

dulciana said...

I tried going to some of the meetup things when we lived in our last city with the same results. The meetups never seemed to actually happen. I do hope you can find some wonderful people to play with.