And now I can ‘fess up: I really did enjoy playing the bass oboe! Honestly, it was fun, even while it was somewhat awkward and uncomfortable. If I were to do it more frequently I think I’d want to do something other than sit on two seat cushions to be high enough for the beast.

But here is a bit of an insight into my sad little mind. What do you think I said to Dan after? Do you think I’d say something like “I nailed it!”? Or even, “I played well!”? Um … well … okay … here’s what I said …

“I didn’t embarrass myself!”

Yep. That’s my little brain at work. Ah well. Dan wasn’t surprised. He knows me too well!

Of course what I had was so small it wasn’t worth talking about, but I take even the smalles of solos seriously. I’d bet many in the audience weren’t even aware of the little bits I had, but I get nervous no matter what. Go figure!

We already have our first review (Mercury News).

Oh … I will also now ‘fess up about the Holst:

I’ve never been a fan. It’s just not my cuppa. Or so I thought. But I truly enjoyed it this past week. I’m glad I was able to play, and that I opted for the bass oboe part. I’ll probably go through withdrawal now. But not for long. Now it’s on to San Jose Dance Company and San Jose Chamber Orchestra doing Tango Barroco!

Oh, and I learned something new about Holst. He turned the Jupiter part of The Planets into a hymn. News to me. British composers seem to love to write hymns, whether or not they are believers. Does that happen here, too? Or are there even any good hymn writers in the states? Do tell! (Most of what I hear that’s new are goofy little “worship songs” that drive me bonkers.)

01. October 2011 · Comments Off on Oboe, English Horn & Bass Oboe! · Categories: Double Reeds, Photos

Last night, before the rehearsal began, Bob Shomler very kindly took photos of the “beast”, along with my own two babies. So here they are … a variety of photos to view. Thanks so much, Bob!

27. August 2011 · Comments Off on That’s a lotta double reeds! · Categories: Double Reeds

One thing that always makes me smile is watching the feet … notice how they aren’t all moving together? (I’ve even seen that in professional groups, believe it or not.)

27. July 2011 · Comments Off on Always Love To Hear Only Double Reeds · Categories: Double Reeds, For Your Listening Enjoyment, Videos

Handel’s Arrival of the Queen of Sheba
Conservatorio Jesús Guridi Vitoria-Gasteiz

15. June 2011 · Comments Off on The Queen Is Here · Categories: Double Reeds, Videos

… with a lotta double reeds!

Handel: Arrival of the Queen of Sheba
Ensemble Palhetas Duplas
Washington Barella and Ricardo Lopes, soloists

All those double reeds … kind of demands the volume be turned up, you know? 🙂

Konzert der Dozenten des Doppelrohr-Festivals 2011

Oboe:
Christoph Hartmann, Isaac Duarte, Renato Bizzotto

Baritonoboe:
Martin Frutiger

Fagott/Kontrafagott:
Matthias Racz, Hans Agreda

Robin writes about the lupophon on his blog, and you can read the wikipedia entry here. And, well, you know me! I had to look it up on YouTube so I could hear what it sounds like (go in to about 1:05 to hear it):

But I still have to ask … what does it sound like?!

The thing about music such as this is that I’m not sure if that’s really how the instrument sounds when played “normally” (can’t think of a better word … sorry!), or if all of this is special technique stuff.

I struggle with a lot of music that sounds like this. I guess it bugs me that I don’t need a good reed, for one thing, and I don’t really even have to concern myself with right and wrong notes. It doesn’t move me in any way, either. I’m not about to say it’s awful music; I don’t feel as if I can judge that. My ears can’t hear it as music, but I was born with 1950s ears. Perhaps some newer ears will hear it differently. Perhaps some other ears find it incredibly moving. Or is it all about the intellectual? I honestly don’t know!

I don’t like tomatoes. Dan has handed me homegrown ones to try, so we can’t blame it on the not-so-great store bought stuff. A few years back he handed me one he had just picked, fresh from the garden, while saying, “If you don’t like THIS, you just don’t like tomatoes!” I didn’t like it. So … yeah … maybe this music is my MusicTomato™.

Here’s another video showing the instrument (at the start of the video):

I only see this listing for players … so am I seeing and hearing wrong? (It CAN happen!) But in any case, this is a fun listen!

Here’s what the YouTube Video tells us:
LA BANDE DES HAUTBOIS DU ROY
A.CAMPRA’: chaconne from Le Carneval de Venise
Mark Radcliffe & Simone Zangani oboes
Davide Bettin & Giuseppe Nalin, oboi da caccia
Paolo Tognon & Claudio Verh, bassoons
Alberto Macchini, drums

… time lapse while I look at the next video …

Ah-hah! This one lists the flute …

J. P. KRIEGER: marche from Lustige Feld-partita
La Bande des Hautbois du Roy (dir. Paolo Tognon)

Ruggero Vartolo, Aviad Gershoni, oboi
Giuseppe Nalin, oboe da caccia
Paolo Tognon ed Oscar Meana, fagotti
Gianpaolo Capuzzo e Gregorio Carraro, flauti dritti
Alberto Macchini, percussioni

I have always enjoyed Bart Schneemann’s oboe playing, ever since purchasing the CD It Takes Two. He’s a fine player, and seems to delve into a vast amount of music; old, new, he can do it!

I wish I could find something from It Takes Two, but I’m not seeing (or hearing) anything on YouTube yet. I’ll keep looking!

I can barely understand a word (although of course there are a few words I — and you two! — can clearly recognize) of this next video, but get a load of the double reed instrument!

So … anyone out there want to fill me in on what he’s saying?

And I’ve just ordered my copy of Melodies sans Paroles for Oboe & Piano (no language problems here; it’s all about the music!):

15. November 2010 · Comments Off on Oye como va · Categories: Double Reeds, Videos

This made me smile. A lot! Too much fun!

Here’s a slightly older work: