Standard: Quarter of the Way through 2012

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Before anyone mocks how I have this post under the Art category, I define any sort of drawing-thing I try to do as suitable content for it. This includes light-hearted revision notes in colorful felt-tip pens.

I haven’t studied at home for a while and I had forgotten that there was a ridiculous amount of CDs sitting in my room. Some of these CDs come from magazines and friends and pointless childish purchases. Good to listen to when scribbling.
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This is a nice one:

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Meanwhile, two days remain before I head down to Durham for the National Youth Orchestra Spring Course, a course lasting twelve days. I haven’t learnt the parts yet…

I’m also in a different section this course due to the absence of another violinist. It’s nice to have a different view/seat, but in such a large orchestra I sometimes prefer to sit within the second violins, within the core of the ensemble. You don’t feel as alone and the conductor + their arms are always directed towards you.

At the same time it’s fun (and scarier!) to be right on the edge of the stage.
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This is what we are playing:

  • Kodaly: Hary Janos Suite,
  • Cantaloube: Songs of the Auvergne,
  • Chávez: Sinfonia India,
  • James MacMillan: Britannia,
  • Kathryn Tickell: Northumbrian Fantasia,
  • Plus Patrick Nunn’s vigorous reinterpretations of traditional British folksongs sourced by Bellowhead
  • After I had lunch, Mum and I talked a bit. I feel like a bore because I can’t stop talking about the next couple of weeks. She was asking me who was sitting where in the strings and, understandably, it wasn’t clear enough to just illustrate word by word.

    So, I divided my mum’s orange peel and plonked a piece of gnawed cucumber in the conductor’s position. Evidently, you can only have so much orange peel to depict the vast Strings section: the violas are non-existing, the second violins are barely there and half the first violins/cellos haven’t turned up.
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    The white circle lies around where I’ll be found.

    Tomorrow I am finally going to get my bow re-haired! I have prolonged this essential instrumental grooming to an almost unbearable state; my teacher told me to get it done during the Christmas holidays – one can imagine how stale it is now…

    A more recent ’embarrassment’ was when I was in Manchester, Royal Northern College of Music. I was having a violin lesson when the teacher asked me when I last re-haired my bow. He told me that the stick of the bow was going squint because it had been neglected for such a long time (something to do with tension in the hair?)

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    (Not my bow.)

    To many people, what I just typed out is a whole load of pointless nonsense. But, from what I gather, if you don’t take care of your instrument, it can make you look rather lazy (and implies an absence of hygiene – the horse hair turns black/green). I agree that I am lazy but frequent instrument maintenance doesn’t come cheap.

    I’ll write again when I’m in Durham. Can’t wait to Ceilidh dance.


    One thought on “Standard: Quarter of the Way through 2012

    1. I really enjoyed this one, on a train journey so that it downloaded so slowly and I had to wait for each photo to be revealed. How you have the time to blog is a mystery.

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