09. April 2008 · Comments Off on You’ve Seen a Movie. · Categories: Ramble

You should have checked out the book. It was written first. It doesn’t end with happy feet and a song.

Antonín Dvorak’s opera is a “Little Mermaid” story, but with a tragic ending.

I guess the writer doesn’t know that the Disney story isn’t the original. Go figure.

(Found here.)

09. April 2008 · Comments Off on Figured It Out! · Categories: Ramble

Last night’s rehearsal went fine; I remembered how the oboe went together when I taught oboe lessons earlier, so no one was shocked to see me try to fit the bell on the top joint. Whew. I even remembered how to put the reed in, and how to finger an A. The reed I chose seemed to suffice, although I’m not sure about its dynamic range.

I brought both oboes and a ton of reeds, thinking we would rehearse in the recital hall. No such luck; while our group had scheduled the hall for our use this entire week, it was taken away from us. (What a shame that the folks that manage the recital hall in the music building don’t get along with the music department … tons of animosity there. Sigh.) So I’ll go back tonight and hope we get the stage then.

Some readers may not know about the whole reed thing. A reed may work perfectly well in one place and feel wrong in another. Having never played at the SCU location, I really want to figure things out there. Someone said the stage is extremely live. I also am not sure which oboe I will choose, although I suspect it will be “the other”. The one I ordinarily use isn’t as fond of high Gs as the other, and its high Eb sometimes has a slight buzz as well. But will those change in the hall? I won’t know until I try them in there.

And yes, of course some artists have to come in cold and just trust their set up. I’d do it if I had to. I’m hoping I don’t have to go there, though.

But prior to tonight there’s the first rehearsal (orchestra only … not my fave, as I want those voices!) for Magic Flute and a student to teach.

09. April 2008 · Comments Off on Read Online · Categories: Ramble

Classical Music Therapy: Music therapy is not a new practice. King Saul used it in Bible times when he was depressed. Not all kinds of music is beneficial. Music psychotherapy is where patients are encouraged to associate mental images with the music. It has been shown to improve mood even after only 6 weeks. Traditional classical music is the only style of music that has been demonstrated to improve mental health both subjectively and objectively to date. It is advised to listen to classical music 30 min a day for optimal beneifts. Mozart tends to have the best results on brain waves. Even 1 hr a week can be beneficial. This writer listens to classical music whenever I am in the car. I have my favorite composers by now. It has helped me a lot.

Um. Okay. 30 minutes. I think I can manage that.

But where do people get this information?

09. April 2008 · Comments Off on from “Death By Oboe” · Categories: Ramble

In the modern world, nothing in music is more tragicomic than the subject of double-reed instruments like the oboe and bassoon. If you’re an oboist or bassoonist in a high-school band, you buy ready-made reeds. Otherwise, you make your own from scratch, using expensive aged cane from particular terroirs, preferably in southern France. Cutting and trimming and binding and shaving reeds consumes a good deal of your days, while other musicians are practicing and regular people are having fun or making love. If you play the oboe seriously, much of your free time is spent making reeds, not love. Besides being ridiculously fragile, reeds are also sensitive to humidity, which on a soggy night can turn an orchestral woodwind section into a squawkfest.
A professional oboist will tell you more than you need to know about what constitutes a Mozart reed, a Mahler reed, a Stravinsky reed, and so on. If he plays in a pops orchestra, there’s probably a Lennon/McCartney reed. If he wants to show you his reed knife, which is razor sharp, you should keep an eye on the exit. Reed making and the pressure on the brain that comes from blowing into an oboe can do unpredictable things to a person.

(Found here.)

09. April 2008 · Comments Off on MQOD · Categories: Ramble

I’m not a classical music nut, but after years of listening to bands like Led Zeppelin, the Beatles and The Guess Who, it’s comforting to listen to something “new” and thought-provoking.

-Peter Epp (I think … just from the URL address) (Read here.)