The Summerglen Files

Music, Creativity, and Everyday Life at Summerglen Music in Raleigh, NC

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Many, Many Shows

April 28th, 2008 · No Comments

Whew! Last week was really packed–a show or rehearsal (or 2!) every day, a fair amount of travelling, and an ailing car. It will be nice to return to a more relaxed routine this week, and maybe get a little more sleep!

For several days last week, I played in an orchestra accompanying the Mt. Olive College Choir in Gounod’s beautiful St. Cecilia Mass. The music wasn’t very demanding, but packed quite a punch when the dynamic contrasts were done properly. As we rehearsed the mass, I tried different approaches to breathing, especially in the loud sections, and experimented with alternate positions in some of the repetitive accompaniment parts.

I had to give up playing my fun alternates after a while, though–the orchestra was crammed into the area between the stage and the front row like sardines, and the trumpets kept moving further and further back. Eventually, going into even 6th position could have been dangerous to the poor trumpet players’ backs, so I stuck with my F-attachment when they got too close. This gig made even the orchestra pit at Page Auditorium feel luxuriously spacious!

On Saturday, Andrew and I drove to Virginia, where my grandmother Fely Thompson lives, and performed dinner music for her 80th birthday party. It was probably the best gift I could’ve given her, because she is also a musician! She’s a brilliant pianist who studied at Peabody Conservatory and continued to perform and teach for decades. (She still has an active private studio at age 80!) We paid tribute to her long teaching career by arranging several tunes from the John Thompson piano method book for the Summerglen Duo. Believe it or not, these little piano pieces sound GREAT on trombone and marimba! We’ve added them to our repertoire, and are itching to record them!

Yesterday, it was back to NC for a Durham Symphony performance and a salsa rehearsal. Most of what I remember from these is being extremely tired. :-) And this evening is my first rehearsal of Mendelssohn’s Elijah with the Northeast Piedmont Chorale.

Tags: a day in the life · Live Music

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