When a blogger I read gets a good review, I like to mention. So congrats, Tenly!

That held up in Sunday’s concert, which opened with Haydn’s “Sinfonie Concertante.” As a showpiece for Teresa Steffen Greenlee (violin), John Sant’Ambrogio (cello), Tenly Williams (oboe) and John Fairlie (bassoon), “Sinfonie” highlighted the unexpected but impressive level of classical music chops living in Steamboat Springs.

Read it here.

I know a lot of folks think the You Tube Symphony is a very silly idea. Whatever. I can’t really get all upset about it or all jazzed about it. It just is. So there you go. Me being as clear as I can possibly be. ;-)

But there are “masterclasses” for all the instruments, give by members of the London Symphony Orchestra that you can check out. Below are the English horn and oboe masterclasses.

English horn
I don’t really think the “fast tonguing” sections for English horn (Cor Anglais) really sound fast, but what do I know?:

Oboe
(Again, I would never need to double tongue something that goes as slowly as he sang it.

12. December 2008 · Comments Off on Thirteenth Day Of Advent · Categories: Christmas, Videos, Watch

Magnificat, J. S. Bach, “Et misericordia”

Just go here. Really. Is that great or what?

(Dan sells photos, too, so if you are looking for a Christmas gift you might check out all his work!)

12. December 2008 · Comments Off on C’mon, You’re Not Down A Mine · Categories: Links, Other People's Words

I love that quote from the interview T (Notes of an Anesthesioboist) brought to my attention. It’s something that Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter and now also Equus fame) has been told by his father.

If ever I am complaining or, you know, anything like that, or I’m tired, my dad will turn around and say, “C’mon, youre not down a mine. Stop complaining. You have a great job, so carry on.”

I think that’s something I should keep in mind. And I like that he has high standards, or at least implies that he does. He doesn’t like the word “mediocre”. Nice.

Another quote, on keeping a performance fresh:

You say to yourself, people in the audience have paid a lot of money for these tickets, — (laughter) no really, though, really — you say, they paid a lot of money and you owe them, and you are being been paid to get out there and do it like it’s the first time you’ve ever done it. It’s your job and there’s nothing else to it. Really.

12. December 2008 · Comments Off on Helping Your Children Leave The Nest · Categories: Ramble

I have suggestions for parents of juniors and seniors in high school. I should probably put together a list of these. (I have suggestions for parents of younger children too … I’m goofy that way, thinking I have answers and all that jazz. Go figure. I wasn’t a perfect parent. Nor was I a perfect child. Shoot, I’m not a perfect anything … except perhaps a perfect whiner!)

One that I think is extremely important is letting high school students start to take charge of certain things. I really appreciate communicating with parents via email (I’m an email addict), and I love seeing them so involved in their child’s life, but when children reach high school I highly recommend letting the student contact me. Learning to cancel lessons in a timely fashion, learning to schedule make up lessons, learning to communicate clearly with an old person … those are handy things to start doing so a student is more capable of all the responsibilities he or she will encounter once the nest has been abandoned.

I even recommend having children wake up on their own for school. Give them an alarm clock. Tell them they have to be responsible for waking up. Heck, then they can’t even get mad at you for yelling “rise and shine!” or whatever thing you do. (And no, we didn’t do this … but that doesn’t mean I can’t recommend it. Right?)

Some college students are entirely unprepared to do things on their own. (I’ve even had parents communicate with me, which is a no-no around here.) Some don’t really understand how to communicate with a professor. While things are extremely relaxed and informal at UCSC I highly recommend not starting your very first email to a instructor with “Hey” … and yes, that’s happened to me a number of times. When an instructor goes out of his or her way to do something for you I highly recommend saying thanks. And saying “I’m sorry” is good for anyone to learn how to do, as long as it’s genuine and necessary.

Speaking of “sorry”, though — that word has become somewhat meaningless to some people. It’s just an automatic thing some students say after making a mistake. I do get a bit weary of that. (Along with “I always do that” when a mistake is made. If you “always do it” figure out why and correct it, please!) And saying “sorry” for the umpteenth time at the umpteenth lesson because the student hasn’t really ever practiced is pretty meaningless as well. I try to get my students to stop saying it. They don’t have to apologize for errors. They merely have to fix them. Like I say, “I don’t ask for much … only perfection!” ;-)

But here I go on a PattyRamble™ again.

So parents … just do yourselves and your children a favor; let them start to take responsibility for things before they go off to college, maybe …? You might actually enjoy what you see. Or not.