I’ve given myself one year to master the violin.

As an adult beginner, I should be playing Twinkle Twinkle; instead, I'm playing Paganini's 24th caprice.

Sarah Chang

Remember me talking about Liz Pitcairn giving that master class at Center Stage Strings (Danielle’s camp)?  Well, Liz is the artistic director of Luzerne Music Center and is friends with Sarah Chang (yes, THE Sarah Chang).  Liz asked Sarah to give a benefit concert here at the camp and Sarah was happy to do it.

The concert was last night, and as you can probably imagine, this week has been busy.  Sarah flew in on Monday and had her first rehearsal that afternoon.  She played Mendelssohn with the student orchestra, so it was a great experience for our campers to accompany a major soloist like Sarah Chang.  There was a second rehearsal on Tuesday and a third on Wednesday morning.  After the Wednesday rehearsal, she gave a great question and answer with the students and then set up shop for the students to have her sign CDs, pictures, their cases, metronomes, one camper even had her sign a chessboard!  I had never met her before, although I did see her perform in Aspen in 2008, so I didn’t know what to expect.  It turns out she’s an incredibly sweet person along with being a hell of a violinist.

The concert itself was awesome; the kids played great, stayed with her, and of course Sarah herself played amazingly.

After the concert there was a dinner with the patrons and many of the faculty members played chamber music.  While Danielle was playing, Sarah noticed something and talked to Danielle afterward.  After they were done talking, something was missing from Danielle’s violin.  It turns out that Sarah loved Danielle’s mute and Danielle ended up giving it to her!

Of course, this was no ordinary mute.  A friend of Danielle’s, Lauren Chipman, began making mutes, pegs, probably other string instrument paraphernalia with Swarovski crystals on them.  It’s called Baroque Bling and you can check them out here:  www.baroquebling.com.

So anyway, when Sarah showed up on Monday, of course I thought about the blog.  In my mind, I saw myself telling her all about it, her being extremely excited and then asking her for a lesson.  Well, as you can probably imagine, I chickened out, and that didn’t happen, but I did mention the blog and got a picture with her:

Sarah, if you’re reading this, you played beautifully and your presence was a great uplift for the entire camp.  (and if you ever find yourself in LA and want to give me a lesson, let me know…)

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