Day Over.

I officially made it through the day!! Teacher the three hour clinic wasn't as hard as I thought it would be...the thing that made it really difficult is that some of the students knew the music really well and some of them didn't know the music at all, so I was kind of stuck in between. I guess I kind of ended up having the students who had already worked on the stuff kind of demonstrate to the others...so I guess it all worked out in the end. Rest of the day went just fine...I didn't realize that orchestration class is taught by Pierre Jalbert! I talked to him for a second after class and said hi from Ricardo...should be a fun class. Posters are finally up in my room...it actually looks like somebody lives here now. For the next few days my principal area of concern will be the Ligeti Sonata and the Rice Orchestra Excerpts. I really want to play well on Sunday, and I think I can...so wish me luck!

Long Day!

Wish me luck in this first really long day of the year: Orchestration Class, practice time, lunch, Theory Class (Early Modern Masters aka. Afternoon of a Faun!), drive to far out Houston to give a clinic that I'm a little bit nervous about, sprint back for the chamber music meeting, sit around and be done for the day! Hope it all goes well!

He Left Because of You.



Good News:

  1. I am finally registered!!! I went to health services this morning and officially found out that I don't have tuberculosis, so my account was cleared to register...and I got into all of the classes I wanted to!
  2. I got a recital time. Clear your datebooks on March 18th at 3:00pm and come on down to Houston to hear me play! I have no idea what I will be playing, since I haven't even had a lesson yet...but they get the recital scheduling out of the way early down in the south...
  3. Angela is finally off of Project Runway...I watched with Hilary and Gwen (me and Hilary were on the edge of our seats when it was down to her and Kayne) I hope that the final three are Michael, Kayne, and Ulli...but I guess we'll see what happens...I wouldn't be surprised if Laura makes it in (probably in Kayne's place...he's been close to getting cut off a few times now).
  4. I actually played the cello a lot today...had a nice reading session with my "New Group." I think it will be pretty good (and fun) but it seems like such a huge step back from CCE (but how couldn't it be...we were best friends and spent almost all of our time together for three years...and a good portion of it was rehearsal time). For those of you who don't know, its a string trio and we unofficially decided to do the Beethoven serenade (which is super cute and hilarious). I voted that we skip the first two Beethoven trios since CCE played them so many times in gigs...its sacred ground...lol. I'm also making a push to work on the Schoenberg Trio...we'll see. Anyways...after that I managed to learn all of those excerpts I have to teach tomorrow, and I practiced Ligeti and the Rice excerpts. Ligeti doesn't sound so hot right now...there is still time though.
  5. I'm listening to Hips Don't Lie.


I like playing with this new screenshot widget too much.


Everything Ends.

There was a lot of build up for the final episode of Six Feet Under...many saying it was the best (or one of the bets) endings to a TV show ever. The last season departed a bit from the general feel of he show (the first three seasons being really well constructed drama...the fourth being a little bit out of control...the fifth being a little heavy on the depressing side)...but in the end it was able to come full circle. There is hard to find anything wrong with the way things end...the car driving into the distance cut in with everybody's lives slowly flickering away. It brings closer in a way that is funny, and sad, and sweet, and moving all at the same time. So watch the show (in order) and get ready to savor its final moments...its worth it.




Dead People and School

I just finished watching three episodes of Six Feet Under: The Final Season. OMG...this show is so depressing...its amazing, but I think I may kill myself by the end of the last episode. They weren't kidding when they put the tagline "Everything Must End." I was practically crying after the 3 hours. As you can see below I figured out how to take a screen shot (using a handy dandy dashboard widget!)...and yes, I can do it now without getting the mouse or the DVD player in the pic. You can see another at the top of this entry...I will also take a page out of Nathaniel's book and try posting random shots that I love...feel free to comment! Tomorrow is the first day of classes. I am not registered for any. I will go to health services at 8am to turn in my form and get a TB test. I hope there are no problems with this. I will then wait for the required time (2 days I think?) and then register for classes. In the meantime I will attend the classes I will (hopefully) eventually be totally registered for. I think I am going to forget about Electronic Music...I don't need the credit (and I'm getting a pretty full schedule) and it will probably be full anyway (since there are only 12 spots total). And maybe they'll offer it again while I'm here? Hope so. Maybe I'll go to the first class just in case...



Ok, so today didn't go as well as I'd hoped it would. I did some more moving in with my parents and uncle, then drove said uncle to the airport. However, when I drove to Rice to get an id and get a locker and drop off my health form, I discovered that it was Saturday and all of the offices needed to complete these tasks were closed. Therefore I walked across the entire campus in the pouring rain to drop off my health form (since the guy at the info desk told me they were open) and didn't even get to turn it in. This put a hamper on my plan to go to the gym, since I couldn't get in without an id. Then, when I went to the computer lab to print out the excerpts I need to learn for the clinic I need to teach, I found out that there wasn't a printer. So that ended that. And now I can't register since they don't have my health form (although this isn't too much of a problem...I guess the first week is kind of a free for all, and I will be able to register on Monday)...so instead I wrote down all of the classes I need to take and figured out my entire schedule, I just didn't sign up for the classes yet. I will go to all of these classes on Monday and make sure the teachers know I will be taking them. OMG. And now I'm really really tired for some reason. And people are hanging out, but I don't have the energy to even go over there. Maybe tomorrow? I need to learn etudes.
tags technorati :

The Plan:

  1. Parents come over (9am) to help me finish moving in.
  2. I drive Uncle Pete to the airport (11am) and my parents leave for Louisiana.
  3. I go stop at Rice to get an ID, a locker, and to drop off my health form.
  4. I go back to my apartment for lunch and to pick up my cello. I fill out a few forms that I need to (and get my mailbox key).
  5. Stop at a post office to mail forms that were just filled out.
  6. I go back to Rice to practice.
  7. I take a practicing break to go to the gym.
  8. I go back to Rice to practice more.
  9. I come back to my apartment and have dinner, then try to register for classes.
  10. Finally done with the day.
tags technorati :

New Music.

Lets discuss some recent music obsessions: 1. SexyBack (Justin Timberlake): I'll admit I dismissed it instantly on the first listening...but then they started playing it every other song on the radio and I started singing along with it. And then the obsession began. I preprogrammed all the stations and flipped between them to get the most listens while in the car (before they released it on iTunes). And now I have it on my iPod and it is currently being repeated over and over again while I write this entry. 2. Yeah! (Usher): Heard it at the TMC dances and eventually found it on iTunes=love. 3. Gold Digger (Kanye West): Another TMC dance discovery...everytime I hear it its hard to sit still. Older Favs include: London Bridge (Fergie), Hey Ya! and The Way You Move (Outkast) and as always Hips Don't Lie (Shakira)...I just can't get over this song!


So those of you who haven't been paying attention: I officially got a teaching job here in Houston. The amazing Stephanie Hunt gave my number to the guy in charge at Taylor High School, and after a few rounds of phone tag I'm teaching private lessons as well as giving some clinics. I was a little scared about the clinics at first, but then I found out it was basically just helping the students with preparing for all-state auditions. Which was fine. But then I looked at the list of excerpts...and now I'm a bit worried. I've never played Bartok Concert for Orchestra before, and its really hard, and I need to be able to teach some of the most difficult parts to a bunch of high schoolers...for THREE HOURS. I better get my lesson plan together. OMG. I also need to teach several other excerpts and two etudes. And get all of my excerpts learned really well, as well as bringing back Ligeti for the Rice Audition next week. In other words...I need to practice a ton.
tags technorati :


In Houston

I am finally in Houston. For some reason there are no interstates that go directly from Texarkana (in Arkansas) to Houston, so we had to take this semi-highway that wasn't restricted access...translation: every once in a while we had to stop at a stoplight, and believe it or not, that really adds a ton of time to the trip. We took a tiny detour to Nacoghdoches, which is the oldest town in Texas. It was kind of cute, and you could see how it used to be a little old western town (with wood sidewalks and everything!). Of course today its al modernized with brick streets and cement sidewalks, but you can still see the awnings and balconies of the old west town. Cute! This morning is orientation at the Shepherd School...I skipped the university orientation (and so did the rest of the Eastman peeps...who I happened to run in to in Rice Village last night!) but today is the important one. Then later its time for finishing unpacking and picking up a few items that I need (shower curtain...oops). More later.
tags technorati :



Lets just say that casting Johnny Depp as Sweeney Todd in the movie musical of the same name is a mistake...doesn't Tim Burton know any other actors?


Right now I am sitting in beautiful Forest City, Arkansas. Lets just say that it in fact is not very beautiful. It seems very undifferent from many run down cities such as those found in upstate New York (but everyone here has a Southern accent). My mom and uncle ordered tea, and forgot that it would be very sweet, but they drank it anyway. In case you didn't know...driving from the very Northern part of Illinois to the very Southern part of Illinois takes a very very long time. We basically spent the entire day in the state of Illinois. And there is nothing to see at all. At least when you drive from Chicago to Rochester you get to see Toledo in the distance, and its always a little bit exciting to drive through downtown Cleveland, and there are even some nice views of the lake from time to time. But driving south through Illinois=NOTHING. There wasn't even any livestock to see. Maybe things will get a bit more exciting when we get into Western Arkansas and Texas. At least I hope so.


Coming and Going.

Tomorrow I am leaving for Houston. I have been scrambling for a few days to get everything ready, and right now I still need to get some things done. It will be nice to finally be in one location for more than two months. However, once I get there, I need to start practicing roughly 82 hours a day: I need to relearn Ligeti as well as several excertps for the Rice entrance audition, and then some etudes and other excerpts that I need to teach at a clinic (I know, right?). Should be fun times. The drive will take two days; at least I have Sexy Back to keep me company (this is starting to become a complete obsession...omg). Time for last minute packing and sleeping...we pull out at 5am. Ugh.


Film Music.

Tonight is film night at Tanglewood. That means that John Williams will be back (remember when I met him?) and will be conducting tons of his music James Earl Jones will be there (doing something or other) and rumor has it that Steven Spielberg himself will make an appearance. OMG. The plan? Sit on the lawn (even though it will be freezing cold...at least I can use my warm and soft Tanglewood hooded sweatshirt that I bought at the gift shop sale two days ago). It will be the concert of the summer...wish you could be there!


I am still here.

For some reason I find it very difficult to blog while I am not permanently rooted in a place (or just temporally visiting). I am faced with this awkward stretch of two months, where nothing here is really mine; there is nowhere I can really go to be by myself. For those of you who don't know, I am in my final days of my first summer at Tanglewood: our final concert is the night of the 14th. I'm sure I will miss the new people I've met here, but it will be hardest of all to say goodbye to Heather; right now she is the one remaining tie to Eastman that I have left, and after we say goodbye in a few days, it will really all be over...I don't think it has really hit me yet. At least we get to spend some time with each other after TMC is over...the plan: leave early on the 15th (must leave Miss Hall's by 10am anyway) and make it to Rochester in the early afternoon. I need to get to the library...probably Dim-Sum for dinner, maybe a stroll down Park Ave? We are staying with Arthur, which should be a joy. Leave early on the 16th from Rochester and make our way to Chicago (11 hour drive). We will probably listen to the TMCO's recording of Elektra about 4 or 5 times, and most definitely Hips Don't Lie, since neither me or Heather have been able to get over it. After that, we say goodbye, I get poked and prodded by doctors for a few days (so I can register for classes once I get to Rice) and I go to the gym EVERY night (to get rid of all of the dorm-food fat...yuck). And I try to see a few friends. Then, its time to face the music and finally move to Houston...I'll be driving down with my parents and Uncle...it takes two days to get there, and it's all places I've never been to, so that should be exciting. Expect more blogging to occur starting in a few days (or maybe even now)...especially once my netflix is rejuvenated, and I have more constant access to the internet. If you need something to do now, listen to Lutoslawski's Preludes and Fugue for 13 Solo Strings. Its really fun, and I'm still not sure how that last movement really qualifies as a fugue (when there are 6 people playing the theme in whatever tempo they feel like). And now, its time for laundry.


Concert Tonight

Dvorak: Carnival Overture (fast, loud and obnoxious) Faure: Pelease et Melisande (pretty, but kind of boring) Babbit: From the Psalter (I'm not playing in it, but its pretty difficult listening) Sibelius: Luonnotar with Dawn Upshaw (really good piece and she's amazing) Ravel: Daphnis and Chloe (not as good as the Phil performance) 8:30pm Ozawa Hall (The Tanglewood Grounds)


Today I:

  1. Played for Yo-Yo Ma (not solo...just continuo for somebody playing a Boccherini Sonata...but still, it was for the Yo-Yo Ma class and I shook his hand and he said my name...so there).
  2. Rehearsed Daphnis and Chloe with the TMC Orchestra. It seemed a bit slow, and the rehearsal was a bit brutal; but I shouldn't talk because I know how our first rehearsal went at Eastman (and we know how that concert turned out).
  3. Bought a bottle of Dr. Frank's Semi-Dry Reisling since I was thinking about Eastman and friends a lot. Then watched a pretty boring concert of some of the Mozart Violin Concertos....the rest will be played tomorrow night. (I don't think I'm gonna go). I'm so over this Mozart Celebration thing...
  4. Was pictured and sort of mentioned in the New York Times review of the Contemporary Music Festival....well...my arm was in the picture (and some of my cello) and a piece that I played was referred to as having a "gentle and lasting impression,"...but whatever, its the New York Times right?!?!!? Those of you who have one, look for the article about the Festival of Contemporary Music and Tanglewood...I haven't see the picture, but I guess my arm and part of my cello are in it, and the piano trio by Ron Ford (Brandelli) was performed by none other than yours truly. Ok, who am I kidding?
  5. Rehearsed Preludes and Fugues by Lutoslawski and was very happy that I have a piece to perform with a cello part you can actually hear!!! Yes!