My last lesson went reasonably well. My reed wasn't as good as the one from last week; she had to work on it a lot longer. But it turned out ok at the end. Again, not great enough to play with others (not that I am doing that anyway) but good enough to use at home for practice.
I'm happy to report that she did notice improvement with the long tone/dynamics exercise. I was able to produce the different dynamics on demand (pp, mf, f, ff). She upped the ante by asking me to go from ff to pp on the same note. I wasn't able to control my air flow well enough and the sound ended up stopping. So that's one thing I will need to work on for this coming week. Also, my vibrato has taken a nosedive. The problem is that when I try to work the vibrato in, I tend to get louder. There are just so many things to think about! Well this week I need to try to figure out how to work the vibrato in without the dynamics changing. I also need to work a bit more on not going sharp with the fortisimos. More reed rolling exercise for me.
My teacher was quite happy with the slow movement of the Marcello. She said that the intonation was great and she liked my dynamics. I've also improved in terms of air flow and line. It doesn't sound as disjointed as before where I was worrying about just note at a time instead of entire phrases. The two negative things she noticed were that I was moving my fingers more than necessary (especially with the half hole) and that my chin was moving around. Problem is that I don't even feel it moving. She thinks I may be doing it to try to tune up my notes but I wonder if it's me trying keep my embouchure in place. Either way I have to practice with my mirror again to make sure I am not chewing or otherwise moving my jaw/chin. UGH! I am quite disturbed by this habit because it's almost subconscious or something since I don't feel it happening. When will my corners and chin just stay in place? Hopefully soon!
I may have some playing opportunities coming up . . . more on that in a later post.