I have been going through (yet another) season of doubt. I tend to either be full of self-doubt or self-loathing.

Yeah, it’s all about me. All the time.

Anyway, I was feeling rather poorly about what I was doing on EH last night and worried about it today. During the break at rehearsal tonight our conductor for this set, Paul Polivnick, and a fellow musician who was out in the hall for the Amram (which he doesn’t play), both complimented me on my playing.

I have to admit that insecure little old me really needed that. It’s so helpful to get feedback. And of course kind and positive words are so encouraging.

Some conductors don’t realize we need to know if they are happy with us. They seem ready to let us know if they are unhappy, and I’m well aware that that correction is a part of their job. I’m okay with correction. But silence … well … it isn’t golden sometimes. If I’m doing something correctly, I’m extremely grateful to hear about it. Maybe it’s just me being self-centered, but there you go.

Of course now that I’ve been complimented I’ll worry like crazy that I’ll now disappoint those two people terribly the next time they hear me play, and they’ll puzzle over why they bothered to compliment me.

Yes, it’s true: you really can’t win with me. Go figure.

Along with a Haydn symphony that doesn’t involve me (I’m on English horn this week), Symphony Silicon Valley is performing Respighi’s Feste romane and David Amram’s brand spankin’ new Piano Concerto No.1, with Jon Nakamatsu. Needless to say, I’ve never played the Amram before. But I’ve also never played the Respighi so while it isn’t new to the world, it’s new to me.

You can buy tickets. I won’t be upset if you do. I know you needed to know that.

13. January 2009 · 1 comment · Categories: BQOD, Links

I wonder if any hero ever dared to play softly?

I love it! This is from Bass Blog, written by a bass player of a very well known yet unnamed orchestra. (Due to the orchestra saying “You can’t use our name” or some such thing, if I recall correctly. Silly, eh? So I won’t name that windy/second/big shouldered city here.)

13. January 2009 · Comments Off on Funny · Categories: Ramble

“My dear Wayne, what I love about your playing is its human quality. You don’t play like a machine. So mistakes will be made from time to time.” (Dramatic pause.) “Just don’t make that mistake again tonight.” (And he didn’t.)

Those are words of Sir John Barbirolli, according to this blog entry. You gotta laugh. Or something.

Read more. It’s about conductors. You know … those people who wave arms at us and expect us to make music. ;-)