Thanks for another fun, productive evening, everyone! Laurel is taking the next couple weeks off, so you’ll rehearse under the very capable direction of the illustrious Colin Williamson in the second half of rehearsal on February 12 & 19.
All the listening links should now be to complete recordings; my apologies for the samples that were there previously!
We have two more weeks of clinics (February 12 & 19), and we’re moving towards larger sectionals. Check the schedule here:
NOTES ON TONIGHT’S REPERTOIRE
1 Harkstow Grange: The challenge throughout the first movement will be for us to play absolutely together. This piece is composed of long notes and long, uneven phrases, with a very fluid sense of time. You’re doing a great job of beginning and ending phrases together, with sensitivity–we just need to tighten up everything in between! You may find it helpful to practice subdividing into eighth notes–e.g., play two eighth notes for every quarter note, four eighth notes for every half note, etc.–to reinforce the underlying pulse of the piece.
2 Lost Lady Found: In contrast to the first movement, the second movement should be light and rhythmic. In 3/4 time, beat one is much stronger than beats two and three. Develop the habit of emphasizing beat one in this movement no matter what tempo you’re working at; this will make it easier to play at faster tempos.
Keep working on your rhythms. You’re all very capable of playing them accurately–the trick is that the patterns keep changing, just when we get comfortable! You may want to develop a system to mark your part where the patterns change, or simply write in the beats (1, 2, 3, 4) above measures you have trouble with.
Soul Bossa Nova
This was fun!
We focused on mm 30 to the end. This section includes a lot of moving, complementary parts that fit together quite intricately. It’s not easy to put together! Work on your own part, paying careful attention to the rhythms, and listen to the recording while reading your part, to get a sense of how your part fits in the whole. This is a real test of focus, and it will sound great and be very gratifying when it comes together, which it will.
Keep the melody line moving–the eighth rests are very short, and we tend to let them interrupt the phrase. Think of skipping a stone across water–the stone touches down only ever so briefly before bouncing upward and forward again, it never loses its momentum. The short rests within phrases are those instants of touching down, and our phrases need to keep their forward momentum.
WHAT TO PRACTICE FOR NEXT WEEK
- Stay Cool – We will focus on mm 9-44 (since we just read through it this week, not according to plan)
- Lincolnshire Posy – II Lost Lady Found
- Somewhere/Maria – More work on Maria, mm 30-end
- Perfection – Read through
- Concert A-flat major scale – We will use this scale in our warm-up again later. If you’re feeling ambitious, try playing this scale in thirds, i.e., ascending Ab-C-Bb-D-C-Eb-D-F-Eb-G-F-Ab-G-Bb-Ab (and in reverse order descending).