I like this sort of thing … it would be nice if all orchestras had them!
Do instruments often fit the personalities of their musicians, or is it vice versa? Stefan Farkas, Principal English Horn for the Seattle Symphony, says his instrument suits him well. “Quite often in the repertoire, the English horn is given slow, melancholy passages,” explains Farkas. “I think that does fit my personality. I’m more of a laid back person.”
This isn’t to say that Farkas is melancholy, but he’s certainly calm and easygoing. His thoughtful demeanor reveals an impressive patience for whatever comes his way.
Reedmaking, for example, can prove to be an incredibly tedious endeavor. Farkas spends countless hours making reeds, most of which aren’t even good enough for rehearsal. “There’s so much weeding out of bad reeds,” he says, but in the spirit of patience, he adds, “It’s a means to an end.” Without the hours of shaping, tweaking and perfecting several reeds, he wouldn’t get to play the instrument he loves.”>