Local food establishments beware...I have not been a big fan of cooking lately...So that means that I will be eating out even more than I usually do. Either that, or I will need to go to Wegman's to actually buy food. Brian's Mom's Jambalaya won't last forever (but it does heat up quite nicely)...
Today was the final class of orchestral rep before the audition. Me being the genius that I am forgot about a Mozart excerpt on the list that we hadn't covered in class before...So when Kathy asked me to play it, I didn't even own the music...oops...Sight read it in class to less than favorable results, turns out its not that hard, but does have some tricky little bits in it...I say: changes are it doesn't turn up on the audition (I guess we'll see about that).
Perle is going well...I am not quite as worried as I once was...I think after this week we will have probably gotten through the whole thing, which leaves two weeks to get it really good. I don't think it will be a problem if we can keep up this number of rehearsals...Which will prove more difficult as Fim's recital looms closer (I am already nervous for her!). I think we are really starting to settle into the piece, and things are making more sense. Yay!!
Tonight I completed the Eastman Grad Application. When I got to the part that asked for my qualifications for grad awards, I realized that I don't have any...So I kind of just fudged a few things and put down references. I also thought that I would have a better chance getting an aural skills TA job than a theory TA, even though I'm not qualified for either. Maybe Dr. Marvin will put in a good word for me? I wonder if he ever reads this blog?
This evening me and Brian settled in and watched the David Lynch classic: Blue Velvet. This movie is a must for any movie fan...Love it or hate it. This movie is very very easy to hate, and I fell in the trap the first time I saw it. When the movie was released many hated it for its depiction of horrible treatment of women (specifically one woman) and dismissed it for a several esoteric plot developments (or lack of development). However, the gems of this movie lie in more technical realms...The innovative cinematography in the opening sequence: beautiful shots of small town America moving into a perfect lawn, zooming into the grass to see hoards of insects fighting with each other...The funny and strange soundtrack: the opening eerie/romantic string theme, the 50's pop song 'Blue Velvet", Isabella Rossalinis trying to sing the same song, random jazz moments, and even cheesy 80's music...The interesting soundscape (characteristic of Lynch) electric hums, grossly distorted grunts...Blue Velvet is a must see: A mystery, noir, crime, romance, s&m, wholesome 50's adventure...Beneath the surface of small-town serenity lies a dark domain where innocents dare not tread and unpredictability is the norm...
From an email by the Ply:Just a reminder to set your clocks back one hour!In doing so you can help save the daylight.Actually, since it is a reversion to standard time, I guess you would actually be helping to waste the daylight.Or perhaps we could consider the extra hour to be borrowed from the Spring, and rename the phenomenon: “Daylight Savings and Loan.”But that could prove scandalous.I'm sure that everybody knows, or better yet, knew about this time change, but thank you to David Plylar for the kind reminder! This extra hour really helped a lot last night when we were all having fun at the Boo Blast...the annual Halloween Party sponsered by various groups at the school. This year's party brought them all together (recently, GSA and SA were sepearted, mainly for drinking purposes) but everyone came together this year and had a party at Milestones. There was open bar from 9-11...and lots of lots of people wearing very fun costumes.The evening really started with a recital by the fabulous Brian Sanders, treating us to a variety of very well played sonatas from contrasting periods and styles. My favortie would have to be the Britten, which I was not at all familar with (save for hearing him practice it). I remember I checked it out of the library one time, but thats all I did...I may have read a bit of it and just returned it. Good for him for playing things that aren't usually heard!!Before Brian's recital, me and Heather took a trip out to far-away-Wegmans...next to Marketplace Mall. The reason we went to this Wegmans was to go to Marketview Liqour...which has a larger selection and cheaper prices. This allowed me to buy a small selection of drinks for a small price. They will be enjoyed immensly by all I am sure. Heather had to indulge herself in a trachy romance novel...but she almost accidentally bought a book called "Cold Blood"...I don't think she would have liked it very much. Dim-Sum with Mary, Heather, Kimberly, Hannah, and Anton was also a treat.Party prep was interesting...Kimberly had purchased a system for creating fake vampire fangs including a tooth adhesive and fake fingernails...however, this didn't work (even though it has been succesful in the past!) so we just dressed semi-slutty (except not really at all...well, I was wearing Caitlin's shirt with fake purple eyelashes) and smeard fake blood on our faces. Kimberly enhanced the contumes by periodically lunging at people's necks and biting them.There were some very fun costumes to be seen...check out Sarahndipity for some fun pictures from the event...I forgot to bring my camera...poo! It was also fun seeing some non-Eastman people=Andrew Dunn and Brian's friend from home. The party ineveitably started to fail when the bar closed. So some of us migrated to Sunny's apartment and I got a tiny swig of Starbuck's Coffee liqour...which is always amazing! After a brief while there, hunger started to set in...and we all craved french fries from the Old Toad...however, when we got there, the kitchen was closed. It was hilarious to see soooo many people out in the Rochester "Club District" . Everyone was sprting hilrious costumes. I agree with Sarabande84...I have hardly seen so many people out in Rochester before...it was kind of fun to see it.We ended up at Roc City Hots...eating some of the nastiest food ever consumed, but when you are a bit drunk and hungry, anything is amazing. And it was worth it to see a nice young woman dressed as a big fluffy dirty beaver...she was also a bit drunk out of her mind. After that...some girls ended up tied to Matt's Bed...I'm not really sure how that happened. I was so tired by that point, and I had a lesson this morning at 10am...so I went to sleep and let the girls fend for themselves.All in all it was a hilarious evening and very very fun! And it was the last Boo Blast that we will have (not like we always went to them every other year...but still!) I liked the fact the the evening started early and we got an extra hour, so I went to sleep around 1 or 2...cant really remember.So it looks like my recital is getting pushed back again. They posted the results for the lottery for Kilbourn in January and February...The priority for this one was DMA-MM (+PC) then senior degree...of which I was the very last person picked. So basically, I don't get to do a recital in Kilbourn this time around either. But coupled with Grad Auditions and Dvorak Competition, it is probably better to do my recital in the Spring. Maybe I can try for a late March time, that way, I can finished off Grad Auditions, work back my recital rep (which is already coming along) and spend more time with CCE and Beethoven Triple after the conclusion of my rectial. I think it could work, although it really isn't the orginal plan. Oh well.And it looks like me and Carrie will be auditioning at Nothwestern together. It almost seems like its juts for fun, but whatever, we can audition for Civic etc etc....and have fun in Chicago for a few days. It would be a blast. I need to do my Eastman Application tomorrow night...which means writing an essay. Musica Nova is very very light this week, so I hope I will be able to get some extra things in...like practicing for the RPO audition. Which is coming up very very soon. Ack!!! But enough about me...
Tonight the White Sox won the world series against Houston. This made my dad very happy. He has been waiting for this his entire life. Me and Kimberly watched the game at Salinger's since neither of us have a functioning TV. My dad has been so excited that he ran around town the other day taking pictures of things that have been 'Whitesoxofied' Yay Sox!!!
...here are some of them...
Pictured at the right is the famous Howard Hanson...Beloved composer and conductor (?) from the 'Golden Age' of the Eastman School of Music...And he has a kind of famous Symphony that is often played too...Anyways...I received a letter today from a certain James Undercofler saying that the proposal that me and Jairo submitted for the Howard Hanson Commission was successful!! This is a good thing because it means that we get $1000 to split between us (even though it all gets sent to him...We agreed on splitting it). It also means that piece, which was going to be written anyway, will have a deadline that will actually be enforced...Because if it isn't finished by the date we wrote on the proposal, then we won't get the money. It also means that I have to find a place for a recital in Chicago, since that was part of our proposal. This is very exciting...I never expected in a million years to get this!
In other news, I was working on my application for Grad School at Eastman, which I decided to do about 3 days ago. I get to apply for grad assistantships, which is kind of exciting (not that I will get any...). What I really wanted was to be an aural skills TA, however, you have to take the GRE for that (no idea why). What you don't need to take the GRE for is a Music History TA and a Theory TA (makes no sense)...Neither of which I am qualified for or have any chance of getting...But there's no harm in trying, right? Ralph Locke and Dr. Marvin agreed to be references! I have also been emailing Norman Fischer about every two seconds trying to find a time when I can meet him down at Rice...I already had to pass up a Rice Symphony Concert...And the new proposed plan was to come hear Norm give a recital at Rothko Chapel!! Unfortunately I have tons of Musica Nova rehearsals as well as Alison's and Cody's and Marisol's Recital...Some of which I am playing in. Why is there always so much going on here? I hope I can find a time to get down there...Right now he is the guy to talk to about the Rochberg Sonata...Since it was written for him and Rochberg isn't alive anymore...oh well...
Yesterday was very productive...I had practiced 3 hours before dinner, which is a very very rare occurrence for me...The Phil concert was fun. It is always interesting to see a group that you are normally a part of. We have never really excelled at Beethoven, but its sounded pretty good, especially since Brian was saying thet it wasn't sounding too good. Today we started Tchaik 6...Semi-difficult, but pretty fun. Sitting with Sunny is always fun...And Brian is right behind also...Should be a blast. And I was late for Musica Nova today, since I wrote down the wrong time in my planner...I got a call from Rachael Young asking where I was...So I got over there really fast, and then proceeded to not be able to play my part...In front of Brad...oog...Need to practice it.
There are a few movies where everyone involved just seemed to get everything right. Last night, when I was working an extra four hour shift at the wonderful Sibley music library, I decided to take in a movie (I know...I was supposed to be working!) so I went back to the DVD shelf and came out with Edward Scissorhands. I have seen this movie once on TV...Wasn't horribly impressed, but it kind of is a classic, so I took in another viewing. Everything in this movie just clicks...A modern fairytale that seems to have happened some time ago, the funny take on suburban life (every house a pretty shade of pastel with a matching car...The choreography of all of the husbands leaving for work in the morning)...The shocking contrast of the cute neighborhood and the giant castle looming above it etc etc...This movie boasts two great performances...One from Diane Wiest, who portrays an Avon lady that takes in the man with scissors for hands and the other is Johnny Depp, who portrays Edward...Probably one of his most memorable roles. This is the best Tim Burton that I have seen, and boasts one of the most classic scores from Danny Elfman...Its a shame that Burton has gone astray recently...With movies like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and the Corpse Bride...He is just remaking something he or somebody else did...But you can find the try Burton in movies like Edward...Where his storytelling is in top form. And who can forget the image of Winona Ryder dancing in the snow created by Edward's massive ice-sculpture...Classic.
Edward Scissorhands (1990)...101%
This chair was recently stolen from a practice room at the Annex of the Eastman School of Music. This chair was stolen by me. This chair now resides in my room at my apartment on Windsor Street. This means that I am a horrible person. Many people that I know...Including my roommate...Went through much trouble to get the school to furnish the practice rooms with these chairs...And now one is being used to furnish my apartment. But in good news...It makes practicing much better.
I am feeling a bit overwhelmed at the moment...In other words how the hell am I going to learn all of this music and get into grad school? I have no idea how to prioritize everything, because everything seems like it should be the most important. Omg...I really want it to be summer right now, and for all of this to be over. Or maybe mid-march would be acceptable. Anyways...why do I feel like everybody looks down on me in orchestral rep...its like, "look at David try, isn't it cute?" Actually, I feel like that in most everything...but this doesn't need to become one of those depressing entries that I was famous for last year...although I feel a new batch coming on in the coming weeks. Music I need to learn:
Again I am sitting here in the library on a gorgeous Sunday morning. Just ran into Sara and she told me that there is a large group of people protesting outside...apprently they are not happy with the new president of the univeristy, who is being confirmed or whatever today. I honestly know nothing about him, except that he is a lawyer. He sounds like he will be fine to me.
Last night there was a tiny CCE gig for a class of '75 reunion at U of R...there was this one guy, you know the type that never seemed to get over college, who comes in a loudly prclaims, "Class of '75!!!!" And everybody in the room is kind of like, "ugh...I can't believe that he is here again..." He had a very very loud voice and could constatnly be heard saying something that wasn't very important...however, after somebody was making some sort of speech, he starting questioning him about the new president, which seemed kind of out of place at a class reunion, when the man speaking wasn't really talking about the new president that much...and that is the only reason that I know that the new president is a lawyer...so there. Eventually they went around the room and tolkd everybody where they were and what they were doing...and that cut out about an hour of our playing time...we just sat on the side and ate dinner...no complaints here!
I have had this realization recently that there is a huge amount of stuff happening in the not so distant future. College applications are due at the beginning of December, and at that same time pre-screen tapes need to be sent...that means that tapes must be recorded very soon...probably by the middle of november, which is a little under a month. This is a bit scary...I should probably take a little stroll over to East End Recording Studios and set up a time some time this week, so I have a goal in mind to have everything ready by. I will need to record 1st mvt of Dvorak as well as Prelude and Sarabande of Bach Dm...neither of which should be a big deal...Dvorak has been under my fingers since as far back as summer before freshman year and the Bach dates back to summer before seinor year of high school...and a tiny bit of recording "help" never hurt anybody!! Right now the schools I am planning on applying to are as follows: 1st choice: Rice or Juilliard...2nd Choice: NEC, Mannes...Unsure about application: Northwestern, Eastman...pretty sure about no application: Depaul.
There are some interesting possibilities here...I really dont want to go anywhere but Rice or Juilliard...I guess Mannes can substitute for Juilliard, since its in NYC and has many of the same teachers, and I think NEC is a bit a of peer pressure audition, I wouldn't really like it very much, but they do have some pretty good teachers...and Northwestern is kind of an easy audition, and I could also audition for Civic, and take a little visit at home...and Eastman would be the failsafe...which maybe I should just do becuase there is no really amazing reason not to. There could be $$$ involved. It turns out that all of CCE is most likely auditioning at Rice, which could be very interesting, depending on how things turn out...of course we will all get in with full scholarships + stipends, which will make staying together much easier!!! Haha...but we can worry about that if it happens...I know everybody has their own interests at heart, which they should. Two things could happen: CCE will end up spread all over the enitre world (Germany, Boston, England, Hong Kong, Africa, Mexico City etc...) and then we will rejoin and win over the world, or we could all go to Rice and be scared of Houston. And of course Insulation Device fits into the equation somewhere...but that is another story entirely.
Another thing to worry about is the upcoming RPO audition. I really feel that I have no chance of getting the job, and a very small chance of even getting past the first round. However, even though I have been having many second thoughts, I turned in the application + check anyways and now I have to go through with it if I want my $50 back. I need to start practicing excperpts like nobody's business...I think I will steal a chair from school so I have a good one at my apartment...maybe if I have a good chair I will practice more. I have run into this strange dilemma...after I practiced in the apartment once, I couldn't really go back, but now I can't really practice at the apartment either...I have had tons of time to practice, but just can't go through with it...ugh...I'm sure the chair will fix everything.
Anyway...CCE resumes rehearsal tonight of the glorious Quartet No. 8 by George Perle...a masterwork of the modern era...but anyway, things were starting to pick up a bit after falll break, I think now with a more constant rehearsal pattern, we will finally break through the surface and learn this thing. We have to perform it for the ocmposers in a little over a month...which will be scary and fun all at the same time!
And the public market is a nice place, even when it is cold and raining.
And the White Sox are in the world series and thay won the first game last night.
And good luck to Fim in the viola audition today.
And I have been writing this entry for a long time.
And we need to watch Blue Velvet sometime (Alison...I know)...
And the end...
And your mom...
Yesterday was the linguistics midterm. I spent all morning studying...the most I have studying in a very long long time. The test went ok, although there were some things I just didn't know at all. But I did know a lot of it...spectrograph stuff was a bit sketchy...seemed insane for her to put that on when those things are so hard to read and the only time we had one for an assignment was when the computer found all of the information for us...but I'm not complaining...anyways
After the test I entered movie watching phase...there were several movies from netflix waiting to be watched, so I grabbed Blade Runner as I went over to work in the library. Yes, we can watch movies (don't worry, I catually did do quite a bit of work also). Blade Runner is about a future Los Angeles that has become a dump of a place to live (since most respectable humans have moved to an 'offworld colony'). A company has been making robot people, known as replicants, and some of these have gone astray and killed some people, so of course, they must be caught (replicants are not legal on Earth). The movie is very interesting, with one spectacualr scene. It goes on the principal that in the future we will go back to some old form of architecture, since all of the buildings seem to be pyramids and everyone dresses in a somewhat old fashioned way, but it works for the movie. The movie functions as a noir-sci-fi, a crime caper with computers basically. I watched the Director's Cut, which as Brian knows, I hate doing. There is usually a good reason all of that stuff was cut from the original...DC's are usually long and clunky and involve many things that none of us ever wanted to see. This DC was a bit different, although I still have seen the original cut, the difference here seems to be that the DC is shorter: they cut out some narration etc...The movie is a bit long and clunky, minimal detecive work brings Harrison Ford (who is horribly miscast in the role) to the replicants very easily, and they usually die in a few short seconds. The most interesting part of the revolves around his relationship with a replicant, who doesn't know she is a replicant. The best shot in the movie happens to be her first entrance, in a huge pyramid building with the sun in the background, an owl flies by. Its really great. However, the movie doesn't match up to the scene. Blade Runner (1982)...85%
Upon returning from the library me and Brian watched the Phantom of Liberty...a truly insance movie. This movie is a classic in a strange way...following no storyline or even a single character. It is a series of short perplexing situations that come from nowhere and go nowhere. For instance: a family is missing their daughter, so they take their daughter into the police so they know what they are looking for...the police even ask if they can take her with to make finding her easier...another: some people sit down at a dining room table on a bunch of toilets and chat as they are "going," then, one by one, they retreat to a small room, lock the door, and eat their dinner. Its a truly insance movie, and at the end me and Brian were like, "what?!?!?" But it is the stuff I love, so it know has a special place in my movie world. Haha.
The Phantom of Liberty (1974)...90%
In other news...I received my copy of Blue Velvet, a movie I used to hate, but now I love. From the crazy mind of David Lynch...its all about finding an ear in a field and some sort of murder mystery craziness...very dark and distrubing, but a classic nonetheless! We should have a viewing soon!
NYC trip was a blast...here is a recap.
Saturday: woke up at 5:15am to catch my early flight into Lagaurdia...Laura's public transit directions took me to Manhattan by bus and subway and soon enough I was meeting up with friends. Took a bit of a walk through Central Park and up Broadway on the upper west side, then hpped on a subway up to 151 to see Marka and her new baby: Benjamin! I of course lost the address and phone number I was supposed to call so I sat in a little park until I saw a tall man carrying a viola emerge, so I knew that was the place. Kimberly had been having a lesson with him (he teaches in Switzerland). We then had tea and chatted with Marka and baby and dog, attempted a walk, went back in. After coffee and cookies me and Kimberly left, hopped back on the subway and proceeded to the first round of H+M shopping...I just looked, Kimberly bought. Ate dinner at a random pizza place then went down to 14th street to meet Rebecca and company. They were late, so we explored a bit, endedup at the Virgin Megastore...I bought an ipod case for only $7!!! Met up with Saucy, Mike Matlock, Mara, and a Rossi friend and proceeded to Brooklyn to a club called Galapagos. We go in and a bunch of women are lying on the stage dressed all in white with creepy mood music going on...eventually they start moving very slowly. Went on for a while...I was a bit wierded out...but it seemed like a fun place. I talked to Laura later and she said that she has played there doing contemporary music before and that it is a very "in" place to go! By that time I was basically dead and I made my way back and crashed (the others stayed on to hear two Eastman groups: Thought and Jerseyband...I hear it was very fun!)
Sunday: Practiced in the morning...then headed out to Fred Sherry's apartment for my lesson! I thought it went well...played the first movement of ligeti (went ok...not the best) but he seemed to like it a lot. Played a tiny bit of the second as well as tiny bits of Bach dm and Dvorak. He just wanted to get a sense of me, I guess. He went on to show me his warm-ups...which include improving scales out of order, gradually building chormatic scales adding one note at a time with very orginized fingerings, and shifting to notes in a 12-tone row constructed in your head. It all seemed pretty cool to me!! I want to go to Juilliard to study with him more than ever!! He had another student coming in...his only at Mannes, so I went back downtown to meet up with Kimberly and Jeffrey. Went with Jeffrey to H+M again...this time I bought two sweaters, some cords, and a scarf...all very exciting! Met up with Kimberly and American Girl place...ugh...and we three proceeded back downtown to Aldo Liquidation...many shoes were bought. Back uptown for dinner with Diane at Shun Lee...very good chinese food! Then me and Kimberly wandered the streets till a late hour at which we both went our seperate ways and went to sleep.
Monday: Went for another walk by myself...wanted to see Bethsda Fountain...ended up going all the way to the Guggenheim and back! Then walked back up to 66th and met Kimberly and Jeffrey, went up to 80 and had lunch at a place on Diane's recommendation...was very fun. Kimberly and I proceeded downtown to Soho and walked the streets/shopped...I bought another jacket/sweater thing, green this time. Went to two more H+M's which were across the street from each other. Decided to keep walking and ended up and ground zero, which I had never seen before. Not much going on...its kind of just a big open space...which I guess is what I expected. Back on the subway to Chinatown, met up with Jeffrey, Kimberly, Caitlin, and Anton and had dinner in Little Italy...which is engulfed by Chinatown. There is only little street full of Italian restaurants with guys in front trying to get you to go in! Food wasn't amazing, but was worth eating for sure. Caitlin left us after dinner and we met up with Saucy who took us on a tour of her haunts downtown. A bar next to Katz's deli, Bar on A, a hooka bar (!), and finally a coffee house in Greenwich Village. All very fun, and by the time we were at the coffee house, I realized I had been walking almost all day since 10am...and I got sooooo tired, and hardly even knew what was going on anymore. I am still kind of recovering.
Tuesday: Met up with Caitlin and took in a bit of the Met museum. Always interesting...you could spend a lifetime there! Went for lunch at the cafeteria (which is a step above most...Caitlin had grilled slamon!) then spent some time in the gift shop...which everyone knows is just as, if not more important than the museum itself. I bought a Pollack mousepad...it was on sale. Went down to Herald square...and took in my 4th H+M of the trip...my 5th overall visit. I was kind of shopped out by that point, and was still having some trouble keeping myself upright from the day before so I took it easy while Caitlin found something to wear to the Met...she is seeing (or maybe has already seen) Aida tonight. Trip back to LGA was a bit exciting (involving a random man yelling at my soon to be cab driver for not wanting to take me) and a phone call from the fabulous L. Rad...asking me to play Popper Duo with her...in concert...and Carnegie Hall...well, maybe it was just a gig. but anyway...I am back in Rochester...and I wish I was still in NYC. I really really really want to go to school there after this trip...so I hope that everything works out (ie...if I get it I can get enough money to justtify going there) The only way to be sure of this is to practice!!!!!!! (although Fred Sherry did give me some pointers for the audition!)
Tomorrow starts massive studying for Linguistics midterm...I hope I survive it!
Today was spent not practicing. Instead I worked way too many hours in the library. By the end of my 2nd shift I had exhausted everything I could possibly do and was considering going to sleep on the counter. However, this was not the best idea, so I just stuck it out for the last 30 minutes. Linguistics is boring me to tears right now...We are discussing graphs representing speech sounds...They weren't interesting when we started them 3 classes ago...and they still aren't interesting now. However, me Anton and Ian have decided to do a project together, possibly on the rhythm and speed of different languages and if the speakers maintain their native rhythm in English or if they develop a new one. Could be very interesting.
The latter part of my day was spent in coaching and rehearsal. This really wore me out for some reason...Even though I have had much harder days before. I thought we sounded pretty bad in our coaching with Phil, but he was very polite and we just worked on some things. I think that once we start regular rehearsals (after fall break) the piece will start to come together...Today when I was trying to find a recording online I tried typing in Perle String quartet No. 8 and also Perle Windows of Order (which is the name of the quartet) and much to my surprise several of the hits refer to our upcoming performance of the piece, most of them referring to a "student ensemble" which will be performing on the concert. That means that this is kind of a big deal. This means that we will rehearse! I think we are all starting to like the piece...and it will be very fun once we finish learning it! Playing the Mozart quartet with Julienne is very fun...and it always helps to be OOC!
Of course the highlight of my day was meeting the mysterious Sophia who lives at http://myphilosophia.blogspot.com/. I discovered her blog a few weeks ago and it has been a love-love relationship ever since. And I must assure you, she is just as hilarious in real life as in her blog...and why does that seem like something that is not ok to say? Her blog is located on the links at the right under Friends and Fun...This posses a problem...Do we categorize her under friend or fun? Perhaps I should reveal the mystery of the name ohmytrill at some point (although most readers already know it!).
Tomorrow I must practice and pack for my trip to NYC and lesson with Fred Sherry! Kind of scared, but not at the same time. He seems pretty chill...and since when did I ever say that?
I need to start working. Yesterday, when I could have been practicing a great deal I was doing other things instead. Such as hanging out with Lauren, Kimberly, and Sara at dim-sum and then later at Lauren's apartment until 1am...this was fun, but not really the best way to be spending my time. Laurne broke out her Boulez DVD collection, yes, she has one, and we watched Boulez conduct Concerto for Orchestra, with Lauren adding in her two cents every so often..."He's the man!" or "Why is he such a badass?!?!?!" Also listened to a piece called Industry for cello and distortion...very fun.
Yesterday was the last class for my Leadership Issues in Music with Dean Undercofler. I will miss this class a great deal. I wrote one of the most flattering reviews of a course and its instructor that I ever have, even though the class is still being developed and could use a little bit more structure. It was so great to be able to work with Undercofler, if even for a short time, and get to know all about what he has done in his life and what he has done for Eastman. For instance, did you know that he founded Musica Nova? But anyway, the class will be dearly missed and everyone should take it.
This should be a very good week. I am now playing in only one piece in Musica Nova...so that allows much much time to practice and get ready for my lesson this weekend with Fred Sherry. I am very very nervous about the second movement of Ligeti. I will present as a piece 'in progess' and I am almost more worried about playing it in studio on wednesday...I will definitly be practicing Dvorak this week...which, I will point out, was new music when it was first written...I am also a but worried about orchestral rep...I have not been taking it seriously at all, but I have kind of decided to take the audition. But I am having strong second thoughts...do I really want to spend a lot of time working on the excerpts? I also feel bad because Kathy is willing to give me extra time (and has already) and I am not working on the music at all. We will see how this week goes. Ugh. Caught a bit of the Break of Reality concert in Kilbourn...I still don't know how they managed to get a recital in there...it seems like some are willing to trade in their right arm to do a degree recital in Kilbourn, and their chamber group does an entire non-degree recital. Hmmm...I had never really heard them play, because I didn't think it was my thing, and now I am sure it is not my thing. But thank god they are actually doing something different than others...or at least than others at Eastman. I am very glad they aren't playing a four cello arrangement of the Rachmaninov Sonata.
Finally done with first rotation! Last night was the Musica Nova concert, and it actually went ok. I was really nervous for at the start of the concert...which is a bit abnormal...I never get nervous for orchestra or musica nova concerts. Hmm...The first two pieces (Torke and Schwanter) went about as well as they could...Katy sounded amazing, of course. The Liderman...well...a lot of things worked that had just never worked before, but a lot of things didn't work that had worked before. There was no chance to party afterward since we had to spend all day today recording.
Got up at 7:30am this morning, and spent about 10 minutes just thinking about how cold I was. I think this morning was the first very very cold morning. The first of many, that is. All of our windows are closed right now. Its only a matter of time before the heat comes on...I guess it depends on how cheap we feel like being...I say, the sooner the better. The recording wasn't nearly as bad as I would have expected. We didn't do a run of the piece, which is good, becuase it would have been a waste of time. Went from about 9-12...took an hour for lunch, and then finished by 3. It was a bit frustrating when we blew through certain sections that sounded awful, and then had to do 15 takes of a string part that sounded fine...but whatever. Apparently this is going to be a real CD...also featuring a Russian Orchestra and a Mexican Orchestra...and all of our names will be on it...if I had known that, I would have requested to do some sections over again before we left.
Afterwards me and Kimberly, Kitty, and Grace went out to Target. $50 later I am the proud new owner of a Mean Girls DVD, some kitchen items, some bathroom items, a bag of candy, and a pumpkin shaped carrying device (which now houses the bag of candy). We stopped at Kripsy Kreme...I had never been there before, but the "Hot" sign was lit up, so we went in and got a free doughnut! Don't worry, we bought coffee too.
I have been going crazy on itunes lately...I bought the Hedwig and the Angry Inch sountrack as well as Alarm Will Sound's new CD: Music of Aphex Twin...both are very fun! Tonight there is a party at the Ply...should be very fun indeed!
Tonight was the first Ossia concert of the year. Lets just say that the concert did happen, and that it was very fun to play Furrer's nuun. I thought the performance went very well! At least as well as it could have gone. Me and Sarah Graf tried very hard to play all of our notes on random beats together! Also on the program was Living Toys, by Ades (famous to those who took music history last year as the composer of Powder Her Face...a piece that you should have known for the final!) I took in the performance (after a wuick chat with Sarah S) which I thought went pretty well (although some of the players informed me otherwise...oops).
As usual there was a gathering afterwards (how can you not go out after a concert?!?!?). Many performers and board members and new music friends gathered at Matthew's for snacks and drinks. Many photos were taken...you can see some at the famous http://theoryofpaul.net as well as on this very page! I'm sure I will get all sorts of interesting visitors since my blog is currently linked on the legendary webpage of P. Miller.
Upon returning home, me and Brian watched Misery...a sort of thriller starring the amazing Kathy Bates. I own this movie, but have never seen it until tonight. As many of you will recall, I entered an online guess the oscars contest and came in something like 8th place...so I won a prize!! My prize was the "Best Actress Prize" celebrating movies that had best actress winners (Erin Brokovich...which I still haven't seen...Dead Man Walking...also haven't seen...the spectacular Fargo...which I had already owned...Misery, and Moonstruck, which I was very happy to get!). If you like Kathy Bates (which everyone does) you can't miss her completly crazed antics while holding a romance novel author captive in the middle of nowhere.
It has finally come the time to remove the book, Sideways, from my currently reading list. Yes! After several months of reading one page every other day (or even less frequently) I finally finished the book that I started in the last week of Banff. It is a very fun book...if you were into the movie, you should give a it a try. Its really funny, because the book knows exactly what it is trying to do...get adapted into a major motion picture...which it did. And it makes fun of itself for doing this. I'm sure that the main character, Miles, has some sort of autobiographical flavor. The author is like, I've failed at everything, and I fell really stupid for selling out like this, but I want to money, so there. There are some very fun sections in the book, that didn't make it to the movie, such as the boys getting attacked by a drunken boar hunter, much much much more drinking than in the movie, and the ending is slightly modified (well, I guess the movie ending is slightly modified...not the book).
This weekend promises to be very busy. Tonight is the Ossia concert, tomorrow night is the Musica Nova concert, Saturday is the Musica Nova recording. And I really really need to practice. I have fallen on hard practicing times, and I really need to get things together. What is my problem? Happy birthday to Fim (yesterday). We went out to the Toad, it was fun.
I really will miss my class with Dean Undercofler...its so fun to hear such random stories about art things and Eastman...and we all get the inside scoop on what's going on around school. Like the plans for the new Rochester Performing Arts Center...basically a new theater will be built where the parking lot across from the dorm is. Plus, a new concert hall will be built in the Sagmore on East. Orginally this 2,000 square foot space was going to feature Mitch Miller's collection of original Toulouse Lautrec prints, but he decided to give Eastman his Miro and Renoir collection. I guess we will just have to live with it. Another part of the the deal is that we get back a famous painting by Maxfield Parrish...The Lute Players. This painting was comissioned by George Eastman for the opening of the Eastman Theater...and before undercofler came here, it was almost sold to a Japanese man for 1.3 million dollars...of course Undercofler ended up saving it, and turned it into a national news story, rasied over 4 million dollars, and it was even turned into a postage stamp at one point. That man really knows what he is doing. However, the painting fell on some hard times, and for some reason or other is now resting in storage at the Memorial Art Gallery. With the constrution of this new art gallery/performance space, the Parrish would be back at Eastman...kind of cool, I think.
Musica Nova's first rotation is almost over, and soon we will start workign on Phlegra by Xenakis. This pieces looks really crazy, and it kind of scares me. But it will be hella fun...in the end. How can you not like that stuff? Have I also mentioned that I am dreading the recording session on Saturday...from 9-5...and yes, we will be using the whole time, I'm sure of it.
A few days ago I won my bid for the complete soundtrack to The Umbrellas of Cherbourg. I payed a little more than I watned to (at $30.50) but what I didn't realize is that the CD is very rare. Someone recently posted a copy on amazon.com for a whopping $50...and thats before shipping. I am looking forward to receiving it!
I think I have a minamalism obession. Currently I have been listening to Tehillim nonstop...ever since I stole the Steve Reich 10 CD set from the library (well...not stole, just borrowed). Actually, the recording of Tehillim I am listening to (right now) is the recording made by Ossia, right here at Eastman. It is regarded as the best recording of the piece available! After a bit of research I determined that approxamitly 197 songs on my ipod are minamalist. That is about 12% of the 1596 songs on my ipod. This must increase.
On my first day of freedom (no more double rotation) I really did nothing. I skipped rep class because I had slept very strangely and my neck almost could not be moved. Ouch. It was a weak excuse and I ended up sleeping kind of late, mainly becuase I didn't want to deal with the pain of getting out of my bed (even though I knew it would be fine after a while). This seems to happen to me a lot...the pain will probably be gone in as little as two days, or as much as a week. Does anybody have a cure for this? Maybe I should invest in one of those fancy pillows?
Met with Jairo and ironed out the last bits of our proposal for the Howard Hanson Student Commisioning Grant...I am not holding my breath, since we threw it together at the last minute, but Jairo has gotten money from them before, so maybe again? Picked up the music for the next Musica Nova concert...featuring Phlegra by Xenakis...and I must say it is one of the most ridiculous things I have seen. The first page is a cello solo consisting entirely of sixteenth-notes with glisses to grace notes...almost every one having some kind of quarter tone marking...that should be interesting. By the end of the piece it is dectouple 32nd notes with a treble clef and bass clef alternating on almost every note...what exactly have I gotten myself into? Musica Nov was frustrating as usual today. Maybe we wouldn't be having so many problems if we had rehearsed at some point? Nuff said bout that...
Rather than practicing this afternoon, like I should have, I used my neck excuse and lazed around the apartment. Made myself a porkchop for dinner, which turned out quite well!
And the rest of my day was spent watching two entire movies! Went with Kimberly to see Willenbrock at the Dryden. The driector was there, and I belive this was the American primere, but I could be wrong about that. It was very interesting hearing the director speak before the film, he told a story about he and his girlfriend almost getting robbed while on vacation, and then while chasing after the robber, realizing that he was completly naked. Of course, there was a corresponding scene in the movie. However, the movie was not terribly interesting. Of course there were some great scenes, like the one mentioned above as well as some amazing cinematography moments (the opening scene of a car driving down the highway while the camera is looking directly down on it...the camera zooming straight up from a couple embracing in a snowing parking lot...can we say Fargo?). From what I hear of the director's other movies, they sound much more interesting. I would not really recommend this movie...Willenbrock...81%
The other movie that I watched, before and after Willenbrock, was the somewhat spectaclalr Sin City. While the concept of the movie is nothing entirely new, the way it is executed just works. Mainly in black and white, the movie depicts a series of crime capers, sometimes bordering on gorefest, starring a huge cast of big names that are all used so little they almost all fucntion as cameos. Probably the most amazing thing about it, is the use of color. While mainly being in black and white, our attention is brought to various things, most often blood, as they appear in their correct color. Occasionly a blue eye is scene, and most notably a man that is completly yellow (weird). Definitly worth checking out (it tops my list of films released this year, so far) especially if you are into huge, romantic, noir, epic, crime stories...Sin City...93%
Everyone reading this is required to attend:
Ossia: New Music...Thursday, October 6th, 8pm...Kilbourn Hall
Furrer: nuun...a piece featuring tons of crazy 32nd notes, random pizzing, and rhythms that are very difficult to play together, and if you come, you get to hear it twice to try and absorb everything you missed the first time
Ades: Living Toys...I know nothing about
Musica Nova...Friday, October 7th, 8pm...Kilbourn Hall
Torke: Adjustable Wrench...80's minamalism, very fun to listen to, you may become obsessed
Schwanter: Sparrows...featuring Katy Blomshield on soprano and string playing frantically singing and playing cortales as well as navigating strings tuned down a half step
Liderman: Barcelonazo...kind of minimal, kind of not, and very long...its all the world premiere and Liderman will be at the concert!
Here I am at the library once again...not sure what I should do with this time that I have to spend sitting here. I know I should be working onthis proposal for the Howard Hanson Grant...but I just can't bring myself to write a paragraph about why a piece written for me would benefit my career. I'm sure I'll come up with something! Jeffrey has his english horn audition today for RPO...there are tons of people walking around with English Horn cases, its kind of funny. No matter what the outcome is, there will be a celebration at his aparment tonight...should be fun. Third party of the weekend...even though I wimped out last night...sooo tired. Ugh. I slept really late today. I am having serious alarm trouble. Since my clock just doesn't go off now, I set my cell phone alarm for 8:30 this morning, in hopes of practicing beofre library. However, it went off at 8:30 and I hit the snooze twice, and then it didn't go off anymore. I didn't wake up until almost 11, so no practicing occured. Why can't my alarms work? Went to dim-sum with Caitlin since I hadn't seen her in roughly 10 billion years. Basically drooled over NYC for fall break and discussed everything we have to do (which of course exceeds the 4 days we will be there.) I'm sure it will be a huge blast. Although Laura will probably get very sick of me after like 2 seconds...although it will be nice to see her again. (even though she never comments on the blog...hmmm) Its so funny that after 3 (or 4?) years of no contact, I suddenly see her again at Banff! I guess its a small world. Have I mentioned that I am so excited about only having normal rotation this rotation? I just did my schedule for this week and there is so much time to practice etc...Tonight there is more Furrer, which of course is exciting. The piece is sooo fun and the concert is this week! I expect you all to be there at 8:00pm on Thursday for Ossia (Furrer, Ades, and then Furrer again) and Friday at 8:00pm for Musica Nova (Torke, Schwanter, and Liderman) that should be interesting. See how well we can play with no rehearsal (ummmm...).
In a weird mood for some reason. Left the party much earlier than I normally do, because I was really tired. I didn't want to leave, but I just did for some reason. Sometimes I don't understand myself. Feel kind of bad since it was a double birthday celebration...oops. Went to Bin Huang's recital of all of the Paganini Caprices, which was pretty amazing. She won the Paganini competition and other competitions such as the Tchaikovsky and Queen Elizabeth. So she is really good. After a while they caprices kind of meld into one, but it really is a feat to play all of them at once. She also praised Jesus at the end...that's all I'll say about that. I have recently become completly obessed with Tehillim...I will probably listen to it constantly and then get sick of it in about a week. Hmmm....
So I was really dreading the concert last night, since it was so long (2 pieces over 40 minutes) but it actually turned out pretty well I think. I know there was some frustration had by some, but everything sounded ok. And the cellos rocked out in the 3rd movement, even if the A to A shift wasn't perfect...but whatever. I am very excited now that I have no phil this rotation. And I think Xenakis will be fun. Kathy Zager asked my to play the opera, because it is contemporary, and I guess she asked Heather also. Its funny, all the sudden she just chats with me...but I guess I am always emailing her because of rotation stuff, so whatever. The opera is during 3rd rotation, when I'm supposed to be principal, so maybe I will get switched to a different concert for principal...we will see. The opera is just string quartet plus some other stuff, so it would be kind of fun. I think I might rather play in phil though, for that rotation. Went to the mall this morning and got a new shirt on sale at Express Men, perfect for playing in I think...and a nice thing thing from gap. Anyways...I need to eat before CCE!