When performing we must keep some distance between the material and our response it. You can’t dance (or play the oboe) if you’re really laughing or really crying. That’s left for the audience. We hope they do both . . .

-James Roe

I remember believing, in my very early days of this professional career (I began rather young; I was 17 when I joined the union and 18 when I began playing with San Jose Symphony (RIP)), that in order to really be into the music I had to show the anguish (should it be that sort of music) on my face and would even (how embarrassing to admit now) sometimes cry while playing. Our job is to relay what the music says, not fall into it ourselves.

My opinion, anyway.

You can read James Roe’s complete blog entry to see what I was reading.

1 Comment

  1. ha, i have shed tears during a concert /rehearsal only because for whatever still unknown reason one of my eyes will start to sting and tear up(not just during concerts) this gets really interesting when the clarinet part is exposed or a solo and i’m trying to read it with 1 eye! not to mention the strange look on the conductors faces when i have tears running down 1 side of my face because i have to keep playing. now that is embarrassing. they’re getting used to it.