Journey of 100
Well folks, I am really happy because tomorrow morning I am playing the Chaconne for approximately 150 5th grade Violin students at PS K 179 in Brooklyn. I am performing courtesy of Principal Bernadette Amato, Director Toby Kasavan of Neighborhood Music and Arts (who provides the music program for the school) and the children’s violin teacher Megan Berson. Stand by for the results in the next few days!
Well this turned out just great – we had terrific support from Principal Amato the classroom teachers Ms. Campili, Ms. Moshitz, Ms. Orlando, Ms. Pacheco-Vitulli, Ms. Durka, Mrs Dibella and Ms. Crass, as well as the children’s violin teach Ms. Berson.
The performance was pretty good, I had enough time to warm up. I used a new approach to rhythmic organization – really letting the time drive hard and build all the way through the first section into the major section, and then treat that section in a similar manner, only letting the third section meander and wander as it would.
It was very gratifying to feel the kids being with me the whole way through the Chaconne – a good 15 minutes of solid music. As I anticipated, there was no problem whatsoever with their attention span.
Afterwards we were able to capture on video the most informative reactions of a number of individual students (I will edit them and post them here in few weeks).
5 P.M. NY, NY
We were a lovely gathering of people, including one musician, in a beautiful apartment that was perfectly suited for live music; after the music we all sat together for quite some time sharing reactions and questions. I noticed that there was a large degree of ease and comfort among the group of listeners for silence, which to me is a testament to the power of the music.
Our location was new to me, and I had decided that would arrive and just start playing, without excusing myself to another room to warm up…in lieu of the warm up I repeated the first part of the opening movement (Allemande). It sort of worked; however, in the future I will explore a warm up that is in effect an open improvisation that leads into the work itself.
I felt slow overall, but calm and attentive, so instead of pushing and driving the music arbitrarily, I simply relaxed and tried to open myself to the flow of the work, and let it come to me and take me where it wanted to go. I also noticed that while in my preparation of the previous three of four days I did *not* run the whole work for continuity (probably would have been a good idea), the parts I did practice were really fine.
A private performance late in the evening for colleagues – long time collaborators and good friends – here at the Bennington Chamber Music Conference.
It was a great pleasure to share this performance with friends with whom I have studied and performed many works of great – and not-so-great [smile] – musical significance. As we began, I was not so sure that I would play the entire Partita (what I first had in mind), but decided to just start at the beginning and let it all flow as best as it would after almost two week of daily teaching and rehearsing. The Chaconne is often played by itself, as a stand-alone work – yet I am coming to the firm conclusion that it is an integral part of the entire work (Partita in D Minor BWV 1004): better said, that the 4 opening movements based on old (in Bach’s time), known dance forms completely flow into the Chaconne, that the Chaconne is an organic emotional, musical and spiritual resolution to the questions raised in the previous movements – Allemande, Corrente, Sarabande and Gigue. One of my colleagues pointed out that many musical elements in the Chaconne are foreshadowed in the dances, linking them together, and that those dances are part of the internal balance, so to speak, of the whole work.
I tested out – with apparent success – ideas that I have been working on in the studio – a few of them in brief: the opening (Allemande), a declamatory call for the attention of the Spirit and a reminder of the Soul’s spiritual journey; an encapsulation of the struggles of Life (Corrente), deeply seated questions of Life’s meaning (Sarabande). I also used the organizing principle of rhythmic drive and groove described below in the recent practice session. They all apparently came clear to my listeners. In particular the rhythmic drive in the first part of the Chaconne set up great freedoms in the return of the theme in the concluding section (minor).
Explored a new approach to the theme – using a very strong rhythmic edge to the pulse, driven by the Bass voice: it produced a greater differentiation of the Bass voice from the upper voices as well as a very strong overall forward drive…have to get off the notes faster and yet make sure that they feel and sound as independent voices of an emotional weight Fitnesstraining voor vrouwen vanaf 50+ Bodybuilding kwaliteit clenbuterol hydrochloride met verzending is ‘men’s physique’ de nieuwe bodybuilding? equal to the Alto and Soprano….thinking of Forkel on J.S. Bach: counterpoint = accumulated harmony – i.e. horizontal harmony to my way of thinking…works well with the dotted rhythm variations…emphasizes their French Overture style feeling…
July 28th, 2013 – performance around 12:30 pm. The performance took place on Sunday afternoon of a chamber music weekend amidst wonderful readings and wonderful performances by many musicians from the Syracuse area. Other than the first public performances this was the first time in the Journey series where I was playing for professional colleagues (as well as other musicians and music lovers). I was gratified to find that not only did my ideas hold up in that situation, but they were felt to be compelling and were taken as valid. I tried out a new understanding of pacing for the end, and it worked. Still the opening theme and first two variations need to be much more organic.