31. May 2007 · Comments Off · Categories: imported, Other People's Words


It would take a Beethoven to do justice to the final triumphant rise in the stock market yesterday, the one that carried the S&P to an all time high of 1530.2 in the index, and 1534.5 in futures. Indeed, Beethoven could have written the ninth symphony about the last few days in the markets, with the long battle between minor and major in the first movements finally giving rise to the triumphal Ode to Joy at the end.

Maybe it’s just me, but reading the above just cracked me up. RTWT if you want.

Okay. That is all. Goodnight.
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31. May 2007 · Comments Off · Categories: imported, Videos

Thanks to Cooper I’ve been introduced to the inspiration for Star Wars.

It explains so much! (Although I feel as if some of the music belongs in a Lord of the Rings parody instead.)
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31. May 2007 · Comments Off · Categories: imported, Ramble

So this guy goes to concerts and records the intermissions. He then creates works from what he’s recorded. He says he doesn’t edit, so you are getting the “real thing.” I’m not sure what I think about all of this, aside from the fact that I would guess it might get pretty boring to listen to. It seems mostly like a novelty item to buy. Would I listen to this more than once? Okay … maybe twice, just to try and figure out what the heck this is! It’s called “SF Variations” so I expected to hear San Francisco Symphony. Nope. Flutes. Lots of flutes. I hear the hymn “Fairest Lord Jesus” and “Oh! Susannah” in the mix. Hmmm. Ives? Still? Just arrangements of tunes for flutes. Anyone know?

As to the legality of it all … I’m mainly in the, “Meh, whatever,” camp. I wouldn’t pay $14 for the CD, though. I get plenty of intermission noise for free. You can too, if you just go to concerts.
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30. May 2007 · Comments Off · Categories: imported, Ramble

Oh how I wish I could go to this. Alas, I have Symphony Silicon Valley, and of course I’m not about to miss that (Beethoven’s 6th, an Amram’s Symphonic Variations on a Song by Woody Guthrie, Leos Janácek’s Sinfonietta, with Paul Polivnick conducting … should be fun … and good!).

But oh man … garlic fries and opera? Yum!
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30. May 2007 · Comments Off · Categories: imported, Ramble

Via an idaho violist I was reminded of the Cleveland violist, Richard Waugh, who is currently blogging about, and will be biking across the country, in honor and memory of his friend and colleague, Charles Barr, who was killed last year while riding his bike.

News article here.
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30. May 2007 · Comments Off · Categories: imported, Quotes


Nobody is getting any after a date that involves Shostakovich played by dudes in sweatpants. And that’s the sole point of going to the symphony.

-Joel Stein

So now you know.

Sole point, my foot.
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30. May 2007 · Comments Off · Categories: imported, Ramble

When an article begins with a lie (okay, a joke, but a lie never the less), I don’t take it too seriously. Still, it’s about musicians and the way we dress, so I had to read it.

Yes, we can use a make over. Sure, I’d love to have someone help me find clothes to fit, that make me look good, and make my reeds work better. Yes, some of us look pretty darn awful, especially if we are told we don’t have to don the black. And I definitely wish men didn’t have to wear tails. Ever. I’m all for “all black, all the time” actually. But no one is asking me.

But I honestly don’t want to shop “where Teri Hatcher, Heather Locklear and Tori Spelling shop.” I am not them. I don’t have their bodies or their looks. Not even close. And I want to wear clothing that suits me, not some highly paid actress who dresses to be seen. I want to dress to be heard. (Which means no distracting clothing, I think.)

Then I read this, “Fashion is about looking your best, not feeling as comfortable as possible,” and I want to scream. I’m sorry (no I’m not), but I have to be comfortable. I refuse to be absolutely miserable just because “it looks great.” I remember a friend who had these incredibly sexy high heels. I said they looked wonderful and she said, “They hurt like hell, but don’t I look great?” Argh. I thought we were through with that.

And could I ever say to an audience member, “Well, yes, I played poorly because my clothes were so darn uncomfortable, but don’t I look great?”

No, I won’t wear a halter dress. No, I don’t look good in animal prints. And I’m not sure anyone will care how my “butt looks” when I’m sitting down, looking incredibly goofy (ever watched a double reed player play?) with my oboe embouchure.

I’m all for looking good. I’m all for finding clothes that are appropriate. I’m tired of seeing women look like they could go out to do yard work or go to the gymn in their concert clothes. But please … I don’t want to wear a “black camisole … under a leopard-print top with a braided leather empire-waist belt.” It isn’t me. It never will be.

And yes, I know there was a lot of jesting in the article. But still ….

Am I touchy today or what?!
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29. May 2007 · Comments Off · Categories: imported, Ramble

There were times, with a former orchestra in which I played, when I was so fearful about a concert I felt might fall apart. When I’d get home Dan would ask, “How did it go?” My response was often, “Well, we didn’t have to stop.”

Of course that was the best thing I could say about the concert sometimes!

So just now I read this:

The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported that all seemed to be going well when suddenly things fell apart and Welser-Möst said, “Sorry.” He directed the ensemble to begin a few bars back, but the performance derailed a second time.

“You see how difficult this is,” Welser-Möst said to the audience. “It worked this morning.”

Yikes! They really DID have to stop. How painful.

Whenever I’ve thought that might happen, I have one of those “heart falling on the floor” moments. You know how that feels, right? Not. Fun. At. All.

Sounds like Welser-Möst handled it well, though. What can you do but make a little joke?

We aren’t brain surgeons. So we can have a “do over” if we need one … can’t we?

In the same article we read that Bronfman had a piano problem. (Not his fault, but a sticking key.)

Stuff happens. Reeds break. Water gets in keys. Pads fall out. (I played a concert once where the clarinet player lost a pad in the middle of a performance and it went rolling away. I couldn’t help but laugh.) Strings break. And brass players fall asleep.

Oh … that last one isn’t okay … is it? ;-)
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29. May 2007 · Comments Off · Categories: imported, Videos

Maybe I’m just paranoid. Maybe this video is just cute to anyone else. But I cringe when I see a five year old sitting on a bed, tooting on an oboe, with a baby crawling around nearby. I see so many things that could go wrong. The baby could bash into the girl and the reed could get rammed into her soft palate. (At one point the baby grabs the bell of the oboe … yikes!) The girl could drop the oboe on the floor. Not to mention she could chomp on the reed.

But like I said, maybe I’m just paranoid.

Or maybe I’m a mom.
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29. May 2007 · Comments Off · Categories: imported, Ramble

Today is my second to last Tuesday on the UCSC campus for the year. It’s not my last day on campus, though; I’ll be attending The Magic Flute this Sunday. I’m looking forward to hearing and seeing it!

I am planning on updating my Musicians’ Etiquette page soon. I think I’ll also make it a bit more “present” at the site. Some things I’m going to be adding will include dealing with contractors, and a musician’s responsibilities when hired for a gig. Stay tuned! In more ways than one. ;-)
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