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Showing posts from February, 2010

A New Phase

I'm in a coffee shop gearing up for the first rehearsal of NEXT weekened's concert in DuPage.(Tchaikovsky 5, Haydn 88, and a World Premiere Harp Concertino. Click HERE for tickets and info.) It's nice to have a little time to myself, and I had intended to use it to edit a couple of posts I had roughed out earlier, but you know what? It's been a chaotic couple of weeks, and nothing I wrote before feels like me anymore. Too angst-y, too conflicted. I'm on the upswing again, and everything feels easy and possible again. It's a new phase beginning, and I can't fight it...

Steve is a wonderful stay-at-home Dad. When he left his job as Education Director for the South Bend Symphony at the end of January I was skeptical that this change would wind up being for the better for us - but it definitely has. I think I had had hopes (though not expectations) that having him home would mean an end to the drudgery of running a house - no more cooking, no more laundr…

I Love Having Run

I'm running again.

I have not been a runner all my life - my dad was always a runner and athlete and I was always pretty sedentary. In 2000 or so I started jogging in my neighborhood in Chicago, and it did not come naturally to me. It took at least a year for me to be able to run three consecutive miles, and another few years before I started running 5Ks and 10Ks and triathlons and doing speed workouts and really self-identifying as a runner. Since then it's been an important and very consistent part of my life. I haven't missed more than a week or so ever, until I was about 6 months pregnant and reluctantly phased it out. Too uncomfortable, too absurd.

Running for me started as a break from the intense self-scrutiny of my professional life as a musician, and wound up being something that I could use all the same discipline and focus on without stakes. As a freelance oboist my mistakes are apparent to all, and if my skills slide too much it can certainly impact my bot…

The Sun is Out

The sun is finally out again! Recently at 5:00 am, while I was sitting awake at the dining room table, in the dark, before the thermostat kicked in to warm the house, next to a sink full of dirty dishes, pumping milk because I hadn't seen my baby awake in fourteen hours (the one night she actually sleeps, wouldn't you know) I drew my daily tarot card, and I was surprised to see the Sun.

It's probably the most optimistic of the Major Arcana cards, and shows a happy baby on a white horse in the full glow of daylight, and implies ease and joy and transparency in one's endeavors. It does not on the surface seem to reflect my current situation, nor to go along with the run of dark Swords cards I've been drawing these past few dark and difficult weeks.

But, you know? The sun did come out. It was finally a bright and gorgeous winter day here in Indiana - felt like the first in months. We had an afternoon concert and it went well - really well. It made me want to get…

Upcoming Concert

This Saturday night - after my recital in Chicago (click HERE for info on that) - I will be with the Northwest Indiana Symphony performing Tchaikovsky's Fifth Symphony. It's a piece that, because I played it in Youth Orchestra as a kid, I know so well I don't even have to count the rests. We would have worked on it for an entire year, and all of the ins and outs are deep in my memory. The problem I actually bump into is that it's so familiar to me I have to keep checking in with myself to make sure I'm phrasing and playing my solos like the grown-up I am rather than the high-school junior I was. It's all imprinted on my brain, bad intonation and all. So the challenge is to keep my professional mind engaged while I play passages I almost could play in my sleep.

Fortunately, the other two works on the program - Howard Hanson's Symphony No. 1 and the Kevin Puts Marimba Concerto - are far less familiar. A neat coincidence is that we're playing side-b…

Slow Down!

People keep telling me to cherish my time with the baby - she'll only be small for a short time. And I know they're right - for the past six and a half months the time has been flying, but in an orderly, gradual, progressive kind of way.

But I've been working for three days. I mean, just about non-stop, from rehearsal to lesson to concert to board meeting to bed, and Zoe's been at home with Steve. And suddenly my baby is hardly even a baby any more. She has two teeth and some hair. She can crawl - fluently, fast, and purposefully. She can say Emm, Emm, when she sees me, and can make signs for Milk and More. She can sit straight up like a teddy bear, and can get herself into that position easily. I had seen these skills before, but she's better at them now. And NOW she can suddenly pull herself up to stand. And use our furniture as a basis for gymnastics instead of just a barrier to crawl around. And take things out of bookshelves, boxes, and bags and play…

Upcoming Concert

I can't wait to start rehearsals for this weekend's concert in South Bend. It's the chamber orchestra, which is always a pleasure anyway, because we get to play in the beautiful DeBartolo Performing Arts Center at Notre Dame, and it's an all French program, which means the music will be colorful and beautiful and interesting, AND we're playing Ravel's Le Tombeau de Couperin which features the oboe all the time and I love it.


For information and tickets click HERE.