Sunday, April 01, 2007

The reality about trying to play well

I used to think that some day I would have the kind of technique on the violin that I had (and still have, actually) on the flute, but now I fear that it is never going to happen. In order to get in shape on the flute I would have to practice a couple of hours a day for a week or two. In order to even think about playing the violin repertoire at all (even poorly) I need to practice technique for several hours a day, and if I skip a day, or I skip something vital like double-stops, my intonation and sound suffers. And then I get depressed. This process of trying to become a good fiddle player always seems to be a "one step forward, three steps back" affair. It's kind of like a complicated version of the childhood game "Giant Steps." Somehow I always seem to find myself back at the starting line taking baby steps.

I guess (and hope) this will pass soon. Maybe if I go out into the world and return the unread library book that my husband renewed three times for me. It's Swann's Way by Proust which he just loved. I would love to have had the experience he had reading it, but now doesn't seem to be the right time for me. If you like Proust, or if you would like to read Proust some time, read what Michael wrote about reading all of In Search of Lost Time. Maybe after I come home I can muster up the strength to pick up my little fiddle and work on some Dounis.

Part of my spirit is beaten from trying to play the viola part of the Polka and Fugue from Schwanda the Bagpiper in a rehearsal today. That's my practicing project for tomorrow: beating my head against the key of B major while jumping on a bed covered with chromatic scales. The piece is very cool though. I'm hoping that working on it will be rewarding, eventually.

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