15. April 2010 · Comments Off on Today · Categories: Opera

We have our second rehearsal for La Rondine today. It’s our first with one of the casts. This is when the fun begins! I love hearing the voices, and the music does make a lot more sense then. La Rondine is about as close to musical theater as can be for opera, I think. I wonder if this might be a good first opera for people who love musical theater.

Here’s a bit of the fun (not us, of course!):

I did a really stupid thing today. (Well, okay, I probably did more than one stupid thing but this is the one I’ll ‘fess up to.) I left my part under my chair! Argh! I planned on going over a few little sections that are a wee bit tricky. (There’s really nothing in it that is as difficult as other operas we’ve been doing, but I of course want to be as close to perfect as possible!) I left the original on the stand thinking, “Well, I bought my own part, so I’ll practice with that and be safe about leaving this part here.” Of course I forgot that I had put my music folder under my chair when we began the rehearsal. I did look under the chair before I left, but the folder is black, and the pit is quite poorly lit. So no practicing the part tomorrow morning after all. Rats and double rats!

I do have reeds to be worked on, so that will easily take up the morning in any case. I played on two different reeds for today’s rehearsal, neither of which had me completely happy, neither of which was even close to perfect. (But when does a reed have us completely happy, eh?) One was too easy and is dying, and the other is definitely not stable yet. The latter is new, so I’m hoping it will decide to become the Perfect Reed. But of course I must have more than one, and I know how likely it is to be absolutely perfect.

Oh dear … I’ve used the word “perfect” far too many times. Man, oh man, that’s just … well … you know … perfect.

15. April 2010 · Comments Off on TQOD · Categories: TQOD

Oooh I heard a beautiful oboe sound coming from next door this afternoon… 🙂

… but the reviewer I’m quoting must be one busy person, attending every symphony in the country!

“A symphony orchestra should be stimulating but never stodgy, which perfectly describes the Oakland East Bay Symphony, the most fun-loving symphony in the country.”


I have friends in the group, and next time I see one (or more) I’m going to ask what makes things so darn fun, and why aren’t they making the groups we play in together the most fun-loving. But I really, really love fun.

Reading the article does make me think about the theater Symphony Silicon Valley (sorry, it appears the site needs updating) plays in. The California Theatre is a restored movie theater. They show movies there on occasion. Why don’t we do a movie/orchestra night? Wouldn’t that be fun? Years and years ago San Jose Symphony (RIP) played the original, rarely heard soundtrack to the silent film, The Thief of Bagdad. I remember it being a bit of a challenge, coordinating the music with the film, but it was pretty darn fun. I’d love to do more of that. And perhaps it would bring in a different audience. Don’t know unless we try!

Q: Is a clarinet bigger than a oboe?
A: the clarinet is much bigger then a oboe

One wonders why it matters, really. But I do wonder what they were measuring … what does “bigger” mean? Certainly we are “skinnier” and we have a narrower (and wonderfully conical) bore. But tip of reed to bell … I’m not sure if the clarinet is longer or not, and I’ve never bothered to compare the two that way, but “much bigger” doesn’t really sound right to me.

I only know we’re better.


Kidding. Maybe.