I had a highschooler come to me today asking if it was actually worth pursuing music in college. I happen to know the kid quite well, and know that she could very well kick all our butts if she put her mind to it, but she was doubting her ability and drive and wanted to know if I had ever thought of turning back.
I had to think really, really hard about that one. From the beginning of eighth grade, I knew that I was going to be a musician of some sort and that I was seriously sorry for the guy who thought he was going to try and stop me. I had that determination, and the four plus hours of practice every day since shows I have some sort of drive (however misguided it may have been at times… ahem…), but the ability? That’s the one that made me think.
In the very early years, I for sure never doubted my ability (perhaps a little too much, it does no good to anyone’s ego and progress if one thinks they are God’s gift to the viola). About Sophomore year, I realized that I was seriously behind where I needed to be, yet never doubted that I had the ability to catch up. About a month before arriving at the conservatory, I felt a bit threatened at the thought of being in competition with kids who have been doing this thing since they were five and went to such and such famous festival or fine arts school to study with so and so who is on my youtube and spotify playlists. But again, I never doubted that I had the ability to catch up with those kids, in less than half the amount of time they had to get where they are.
So no, I never doubted my ability, drive, etc… But others have and still do.
There are three billion other people in this world who would love to take the job of doubting yourself. Why not give them that pleasure? It’ll take the burden off your shoulders, leaving you free to grow.
Only the unique breed of artist and writer can be putting colored pencils in chromatic order in the shiny new pencil case and end up with a story using all the color names…
Which may be a great idea for a children’s book, actually
So I finally found out today that yes, the school is going to let me double major. I call my teacher to tell him the news and he responds:
"Okay, so that means everything is double! Instead of two bows, you have to play four, and be sure to double the tempo of Hoffmeister okay?"
I love his sense of humor (:
"Mistakes are just knowledge waiting to happen"
Heard passing the TV today. I wish I knew who said it, because I like it lots :)
I hereby apologize to everyone on my floor who had to suffer through my awful rendition of ‘All I Ask Of You’ from the Phantom of the Opera when I randomly burst into song on the way to the trashroom.
…I honestly have no idea where the hell that came from…
After quite a long period of ‘Look at me! I’ve gotten so much better and sound awesome!’ I’m back to sounding like sh*t again.
And I’m okay with that.
After all, how can I get better if I don’t think I sound like sh*t? It’s nice to be back to being productive again :)
There are some days in the practice room where one sits in it and metaphorically (sometimes literally) bangs his head against the wall. But there are other days when in between headbangs, it seems as if the wall plants a brilliant solution to the problem in ones head. Today was such a day!
Because I play viola, set-up is an inevitable on-going problem. Being a human of very small hands and very short arms only serves to amplify that problem. After experiencing some wrist pain playing concerts this weekend—pain is almost ALWAYS a sign you are doing something WRONG! It is the community chest card that says “your setup or technique is a problem. Go to setup jail. Do not pass GO. Do not collect $200 (or play your concerto)”— so I spent yesterday on my balance board learning how to be a bipedal without being awkward or falling over again and today using that balanced, bipedal self and trying to add a giant, wooden, vibrating box to the mix. After twenty minutes of “do you go here?” “No.” “how ‘bout here?” “Definitely not” etc… I put the viola in this spot and it was earth shattering.
OF COURSE THAT’S WHERE THE VIOLA GOES! It’s like that particular part of my collarbone/shoulder was designed with the sole purpose of putting a viola there in mind! It just sort of floats there, leaving both hands and arms free to do whatever they need to and allowing both shoulders to just freaking relax already. Now to reteach my body that this is where everything actually goes…
Daylight savings time is inevitable. It is also inevitable that it delivers a swift kick to my rear end at the same time every year, almost like clockwork…
Do what you want with that, because I sure don’t know what to do with it…