11. August 2008 · Comments Off on The Musician’s Life (in L.A. anyway) · Categories: A Musician's LIfe, Links

Lashinsky, who plays for the Long Beach Symphony, said top-dollar assignments are so coveted that musicians don’t think twice about clocking in sick or even bleeding, as she has.

“When I was doing ‘Phantom of the Opera,’ a cabinet fell on my head,” she recalled. “I wrapped it up, put on this beautiful scarf over it, and went to the gig. Afterward, I had a colleague take me to the E.R. I got 14 stitches.”

She laughed ruefully: “I’ve worked with a 103 fever in an orchestra pit. I’ve worked with a popped lung. If you don’t work, you don’t earn.”

Well, many of us can relate to the above! Yes, I’ve worked sick. I’ve played with a cut finger that bled all over the oboe too. (Never needed stitches, though.)

I think the salaries must be higher with the L.A. Opera, though.

“I’m going into the music business,” Gray said. “There’s no such thing as job security.”

Heh … good thing this young bass player already says this. Even if he doesn’t fully know what it means yet.

Still, I wouldn’t give it up. 🙂

11. August 2008 · Comments Off on Music Glasses · Categories: Ramble

I really need new music reading glasses. I would love to have them by Thursday, when I’m getting together with two friends to play the John Marvin trio, Music from the Night, for two oboes and English horn.

Alas, that won’t happen. 🙁

I’ve posted this before, but below are portions of the work:

When one’s eyes aren’t seeing music clearly this work is not easy! Shoot, it’s not easy when one’s eyes are working! Ah well. I’ll do what I can, and I hope I don’t humiliate myself entirely.

11. August 2008 · 2 comments · Categories: Links

I don’t know why, but when I saw this headline, Opera New Jersey Announces Ruth And Swenson, I thought of ice cream. You know … like “Ben & Jerry’s”. I’m gonna guess they’ll correct that typo somewhat quickly.

I realize I’m the queen of typos, so I dare not mock them.

I’m just sayin’ ….

11. August 2008 · Comments Off on The End Of Sarastro · Categories: Ramble

The director killed Sarastro off. I didn’t know the opera was ever done that way. Or is this a first?

Decked out with a Stalin-like mustache and an upended Miss Liberty crown, he is a ridiculous figure, surrounded by yes men instead of wise men. He dies with a whimper in the end, and Mozart’s paean to his glory is played against a darkened and empty stage.

I read it here.

11. August 2008 · Comments Off on Amy Tan Interview · Categories: Links, Other People's Words

I had a very demanding mother. I thought I disappointed her in every single way. She wanted me to be a concert pianist, and that would be on weekends. My day job would be brain surgeon. It’s kind of ironic that my mother wanted me to be a brain surgeon, because our family had so many neurological diseases.

… and later …

Do you plan to watch any of the Olympics events? Probably only if my husband happens to have the TV on.

What about women’s gymnastics? No, it makes me anxious.

You’re worried someone will fall off the balance beam? Exactly. It awakens my own anxiety about performance. When I was 6 years old, I made a mistake during a piano recital, and the audience began to laugh. I fled the stage crying, and it traumatized me forever.

Isn’t writing a kind of performance? No. It’s a meditation. It does not have to do with personal humiliation until after it gets done. Later on people will vilify you. But I don’t have to read those reviews.

For all your supposed performance anxiety, you do play the tambourine in the Rock Bottom Remainders, which includes Stephen King, Matt Groening and other rock-star wannabes. It’s a charity band? I think we have raised more than $2 million for literacy programs.

Why do you play the tambourine instead of the piano after all your years of lessons? Chopin is not what you play when you’re in a rock band.

I have always had a difficult time watching both gymnastics and the ice skating when it comes to the Olympics. I get so darn nervous and it becomes too painful. I understand what Ms. Tan is saying, to be sure. I don’t handle performance competitions very well.

I read it here.


I had heard of, but had never heard, Andreas Scholl before. Now I’ve heard and seen him in action via YouTube. Wow.

11. August 2008 · Comments Off on MQOD · Categories: Quotes

It’s a piece of wood, an oboe. It’s nothing to live with. It’s a stick, a walking stick maybe.

-Heinz Holliger