Exam pieces

Previous exams have been somewhat easier. Not only because the pieces given to play aren't as demanding as the ones we're facing this time, but... well, they have all been ordered. For the final exam we are giving an actual concert and it's going to include a concerto by Mozart and the Hungarian Pastoral Fantasy by Doppler. And one piece by our own choice - the only demands are these: it must be from outside the Suzuki repertoire and if it's chamber music, flute has to have a "soloist-like" part.

Why is it more difficult then, one might ask. First thought would be of course that it's easier, you're able to play just what you like! Noooope. In my opinion. I don't want to have same kind of style that there already is (concertos, virtuoso fantasies), also I want my concert to represent me in some way. Would have Loved to play Carmen-fantasy (Borne), but no can do... :D

It felt like a struggle to know where to start searching or choosing, so I decided to go for my own sheet music piles. Dug out all that I've liked in recent concerts etc. The pile consisted of J.S.Bach (sonatas & solo suite), C.Ph.E.Bach (solo sonata), Telemann (solos), Schubert (sonata), Takemitsu (Air), Piazzolla (Histoire du tango), Villa-Lobos (Assobio a játo), Burkhard (solo suite), Widor (suite), Vasks (solo), Martin (Ballade). Now it's narrowed down to 4 options: one father, one son, one suite and one landscape. I think I'll consult our trainer and then think a bit more. And play a Lot.

Oh and by the way, my Mozart's in quite a good state :) Or at least it's on the verge of "by-the-heart"... :D


Talent Code

Past weekend was our second to last training session. Quite an alarming feeling, I say. One weekend to go during Spring semester, then a day for preparation just prior to the examinations in June. We already know the dates for the latter, Friday the 26th and Saturday the 27th. Yikes... :D

*** I couldn't make it to lectures this Friday, had a rehearsal with our town orchestra for its 80th Anniversary concert. Have to say, I was very Very pleased to be asked for the project. We played a 3-piece work composed to 3 fairytales of H.C. Andersen. Composer was Jan Järvlep. ***

On Saturday morning I got up at 6am, which is somewhat strange for me. But it's never hard to do when there's something interesting & motivating to look forward to. Bus ride went quickly while listening to different versions of Fauré's Fantasy, my homework piece for this session. I don't have trouble remembering it, but I still need to play and play to get it flowing smoooothly the whole way through. When performing it to our trainer Leena & 2 of my fellow trainees, I was of course a bit nervous and stammered on some passages. But all in all I was quite happy with my playing.

Saturday's training began with trainee Niclas teaching Bach's March. Good lesson, I always enjoy observing others as it gives me a lot to think about, not to mention all the new ideas! After the pupil left, us other trainees & Leena gave N some feedback. Then it was some overall conversation and a decision that I would teach the next kid Blavet/2nd movement as Hanna had to leave already. Meri would be teaching Venice/double-tongue variation to the third pupil.

At noon my pupil arrived. I remember seeing her "some" years ago at this group class, just 5 years old, with her mom. Now she was a Young Lady! :) (...and I felt Old...) She played from the book, which helped me, but I think I would have managed ok without it. I've been revising books 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 8 & 9 these past weeks. 

After Meri's wonderful class we got our feedback. The challenge with these teaching-training-lessons is how to make it effective in that short amount of time, with an unfamiliar child. Usually we know what piece to teach at least a day in advance, this time I kinda heard it half an hour before. But as the pieces are all familiar and we have prepared lots of exercises for them, it's no problem to start teaching.

The day continued with Meri playing her homework. After lunch it was my turn. The last bigger thing was Meri telling us about the book Talent Code (by Daniel Coyle). I think it's going to be an interesting read, just based on the short introduction we got. Nothing too "high flying idealism, but clear thoughts and some science.


On Sunday we continued on the subject (talent & book) with trainer Eija. But that's another post to come shortly. Now I'm off to practice & teach! :)