06. February 2012 · Comments Off on Am I Really Listening? · Categories: Ramble

Yes, I’ve written about this before. But here I go again ….

I posted a photo I took of a crazy looking flower on my pattyo blog the other day. When I saw it on one of my walks I was just astounded by it. I still am.

But here’s the (sad?) thing: I realized, in going over last year’s photos, that I had taken photos of it last summer! I just hadn’t really seen it clearly when I snapped the photos back then. Sometimes, with a camera in front of my face, I’m not really looking. It’s similar to how I read sometimes — I might read an entire page of words and realize I didn’t get the content at all. Sad, but true.

And so it goes with music. For me. For my students.

Sometimes after a student plays something I’ll ask, “What did you hear?” I can’t tell you the number of times a student will confess to not really hearing anything. We get so busy working on fingering, or breathing, or making the darn reed work or something else that takes our concentration that we forget to listen! When I get new students who have been taking oboe for quite some time they frequently have missed hearing “glitches” (notes between notes) the entire time they’ve played the instrument.

When we practice it is always a good idea to ask ourselves “What am I hearing?” on occasion. It may sound crazy, but we need to be reminded to listen.

Oh … and that crazy flower? Here you go:

This new and exciting photo hobby of mine is teaching me to see more, see more clearly, and see differently. It’s quite fun!

06. February 2012 · 2 comments · Categories: FBQD

So it comes down to this decision: Bach double for two violins or the Bach oboe and violin concerto? How does one choose between these?

So many difficult decisions in life!

06. February 2012 · Comments Off on He Will Enlighten You · Categories: Other People's Words

Conductor Kenneth Woods has a very frank post about lighting issues — as well as temperature issues — on his blog. Yes, indeed, he is so right! I don’t complain here any more &mdash or at least not too much (I hope!) — about issues with temperature and lighting. Sometimes I get in trouble if I whine on my blog because people do read it and they will confront me if they think I’ve said anything that might reflect poorly upon them or the particular company I’m grumping about. I’m very slowly learning to be careful and maybe even a little bit kind. It if isn’t kind, why write it, right? And, truth be told, mostly things are done pretty well where I work. Things that aren’t done well seem impossible to change in any case, so what’s the point of complaining? It would be like whining about my bad reed making skills.

Oh. Wait. I do whine about that. Forget that comparison!

But read his post. It appears he’d finally had enough and decided it was time to state his case.

06. February 2012 · Comments Off on TQOD · Categories: TQOD

Things that are hilarious: the oboe. Both it’s name and it’s sound.