A straight three minutesPosted: April 7, 2012
Because of Colburn’s spring break when Evin was back home in San Francisco and my spring break from Cal State Fullerton when Danielle and I went down to San Diego for a little while, I hadn’t had a lesson with Evin in a while. Yesterday morning, we worked together and it was a bit of an eye opener. I think I’ve really taken a step backwards in the last couple of weeks. Of course, when getting better, it’s common to think you’re actually getting worse, but in this case, I think it’s true. For a while there I was hitting the metronome hard and the slow work, and everything was slowly coming along. I’ve been slacking with the hard stuff and have been doing mostly performance practice lately, trying to just get through the new stuff. I sort of fell into that pit with Paganini where I just wanted to play enough to get something on video, but wasn’t actually getting better as a violinist. Same thing here. The good news: I pretty much know the entire piece now! The bad news: I sound like crap when I play it.
My vision, of course, was to play with Evin and record it during our lesson and have a sparkling little gem to post on here today. Not so much. We did play, but I couldn’t get through it. Since we haven’t played together for a while, I was nervous. That sounds like a weak excuse, but it’s true. I usually go into a practice room, text her where I am, and she comes and finds me. Our lesson was at 11am and I texted her my location at 10:53. As soon as I sent it, it was like I could feel her presence coming and I got a little scared. It was like the water ripples from Jurassic Park. (And Evin is not that intimidating by the way. She’s very sweet. The scary part is just playing in front of her when I know she’s so good. It’s hard to explain) When she showed up, I sucked it up for a while, but sort of got it together. The title of this post refers to our best run, which was about a three minute segment of the piece. I decided not to post it because the only redeeming thing about it is that I simply play for three minutes. My rhythm is pretty bad, as I hold most of the ties too long. It was very apparent I haven’t been working with the metronome (something I started to correct this morning, which was also depressing. Parts I could whip through with the metronome a couple of weeks ago I really had a difficult time with today. You just can’t let up with these things). Worse than the rhythm, though, was the intonation, which was atrocious. Really bad. When listening, even I cringe. My sound is surprisingly decent, but it is the only thing I’ve really been working on.
Hmm. So I need slow work to improve my intonation and metronome work to improve my rhythm? This is nothing new. Hopefully I’ll actually DO what I should be doing.