Oklahoma!

I trudged in through my front door and dragged my tired limbs to my room. I propped open my laptop for a routine check of my email as I do after every game. Expecting nothing but the usual wash of unimportant emails, I was all but ready to jump into the shower. But one email had been prioritized by my inbox as important and came from a name I was not familiar with. Hm.
To my delight, this email was an invitation to play with the pit orchestra of the local theater company called Running to Places. They needed a bassoonist for their production of Oklahoma! Needless to say, I was stoked. Anything to keep me playing rigorously through the summer.

This was last Friday, and today is Monday. From Sunday to Sunday there were five rehearsals and three shows (the first rehearsal was eight hours long!). The week was a lot of fun; I got to play with some old friends and makes some new ones. The conductor/pianist was absolutely delightful and it was nothing but fantastic to work with him. Although by the last performance I had started getting bored of watching the same show over and over again, the music was challenging enough to keep me occupied. For a week’s worth of rehearsals, I’d have to say the performances went quite well.

Props to all the cast and crew that were involved in the production, and hats off to the members of the pit orchestra, who never get enough attention for what they do in theater. 

Double Reed Day

Last weekend, I had the experience of participating on SUNY Fredonia’s Double Reed Day. As a bassoonist, it was an enjoyable day at Fredonia’s campus. Not only did I get to visit a fine music college, but I got to play in ensembles that are quite difficult to come by. As this event was specifically geared toward high/middle school double reed players, we got a chance to see things that we usually do not see in other music events, such as reed making classes. As a bassoonist who thoroughly enjoys making reeds, the new information gathered during the session was valuable and interesting. I particularly enjoyed being able to play a piece by Carl Maria von Weber in a bassoon quartet. The college students who worked with us throughout the day were friendly and approachable as well.

The master class was a good experience, but it made me realize a few things. It showed how fortunate I was to be living in a town where the arts and music are so well fostered, with so many talented mentors to guide and teach the younger generation their skills. It was quite evident that not everyone who came to this event had the same benefit.

I made some new friends, met some old ones, and overall had a fun day. What more could I ask?

Back To School!

You may at first get the impression that I’m excited to go back to school indicated by the obvious exclamation point at the end of my title. While that assumption is not entirely false, I am more that a little reluctant to let go of my summer freedom. And by freedom I mean being able to have the time to actually balance all the aspects of my life.
But all complaining aside, I have set a few goals that I need to reach before I set foot in school the morning of September 8th. I’ll spare you the non-musical ones.
  1. Finish the first draft of the piece I am working on for my school’s symphony orchestra.
  2. Finish the final draft of “A Miracle,” a choir piece I plan to show my school’s choir teacher.
  3. Have a decent enough (presentable) grasp on this: