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Showing posts from April, 2017

Everyone Flops

It was winter, now it's spring
It got humid and my reeds changed
I was tired from driving
The conductor was unclear
I couldn't hear my entrances
I'm not good at playing second oboe
My reeds are all too old or too new
My oboe is out of adjustment
I wasn't warmed up because of not playing the first piece
Dvorak is mean to the second oboe

Every one of those thoughts went through my head during the ten minutes that I was onstage playing the piece I couldn't play, and not one of them was helpful.

Because, ultimately, it was all on me.  I couldn't pull it together,  I didn't do a good job, and I disappointed myself.  Bad concerts happen to everyone, occasionally, but in this case it happened to me and it was no fun at all.  



A student came in this week, and told me a sad story about the concert she'd played over the weekend.  But unlike the defeated me you saw above, she framed everything in the form of a lesson learned.  She shouldn't have had only one …

Balance, Rebalance, Counterbalance

I do a lot in my life and career, as I have discussed before.  And every bit of it is something I have taken on intentionally, at some point, and every bit of it is something that I enjoy - but still sometimes it gets overwhelming.  Just as you should balance your checkbook every month and your investment portfolio every year - or so I read -  I have to periodically find a way to rebalance all of the balls I keep in the air in my life.

My income comes from three main sources - performance, teaching, and my reed business.  My time has more claims on than that, of course, because of non-income-producing but important things like interacting with my husband and daughter, exercising for my own health, and practicing and writing which are sort of a part of my job but are mostly my own creative outlets.

This year I have had a lot of wonderful performance opportunities, including my Mozart concerto, several enjoyable chamber music concerts, our ballet tour to NYC, and a few CD Release Recit…

Oboe for Sale

For sale:   Loree oboe, AK Bore, serial # RJ XX.  I bought this oboe new in 2008- from Carlos Coelho - and played it as my primary oboe for two years.  Since then it has been a reliable back-up instrument.  I keep it well maintained, because oboes  are unreliable beasts.  My back-up oboes don't sit in a closet, they travel with me to gigs and teaching and are always ready to be pressed into use.


RJ  did crack, extensively, the first year that I had it.  But since being pinned and inserted by Carlos Coelho, those cracks have been perfectly stable and trouble-free.  It was fully serviced about a year ago by the great Sue Shockey, and is working beautifully.


This Loree is slim and agile.  It has a dark sound, but is beautifully flexible - I can make it bright, make it dark, make it sing or shout.  The scale is even and the high register leaps out strongly and proudly.  It plays in tune.  I have loved it for years.


Selling to buy a new instrument.  Asking $5000 or best offer.  Cont…

Some Gigs are Special

I work all the time.  In addition to teaching and making reeds, I play in a different orchestra almost every week.  Most nights find me out in a rehearsal or a concert.  Different repertoire each week, different colleagues, a different commute.  I take it all in my stride.

But sometimes there's a gig that is clearly special.  That is worth getting really excited and happy about.  That gig happened last week.

Steve and I got to spend a week in New York City, playing Prokofiev's Romeo and Juliet with the Joffrey Ballet at Lincoln Center, to packed and enthusiastic houses, with a great orchestra, being paid well.  It was fantastic, spectacular music which was genuinely fun to play every time, and it was the greatest city in the world.  This gig felt like the best EVER band trip, in that I got to do it as an adult with grownup social skills, sovereignty over my free time, and real money, instead of as a painfully introverted 15-year-old being dragged from site to site, trying si…