If your child studies with me, they have likely already received an ear full of chatter regarding practice methods. I hope that they will manage to take their bassoons out every day and spend some time, but I have no hard "rules" regarding how much time they should be spending.
What should they be doing? SLOW, careful, mindful practice to start. YES, we all hate to go slow. But the slower and more exacting one begins (and continues), the less time one must ultimately spend undoing mistakes made by rushing through. The study referenced below explains the theory and the testing of it far better than I could:
I wrote a post back in December of 2011 describing almost exactly what I'm doing now, and I just found it while combing through old emails. A beautiful double-epiphany of realization, both that I wanted these things then and that I have actually found a way to do them, now. I'm not done yet. There is still so much to do and learn, but I might actually be headed down the right path and that is HUGE.
If you don't know HOW it is I am doing those things now, check out Church of Beethoven-Tucson and ChamberLab. Yes, that's me with the bassoon and the train and the AMAZING Chris Black.
Larry's Music = CLOSED. Unceremoniously and without warning. I'm currently investigating every music store in town, as well as all music academies, for options. So far, it seems all of them will require added cost and travel for my families and for me. Larry's Music wasn't exactly nice, but the location was perfect and it allowed me to keep my rates incredibly low. Bassoon is already the most expensive instrument to rent and I think impossible to master without lessons. Renting space from an existing music studio is going to be the best option, but I need to find a place with just the right magical combination of location, cost, and available space.
I suppose I should have seen the writing on the wall when the light switch in the bathroom never got fixed and the owner told his employees to let the phone ring, and ring, and ring. Can't bring in business if nobody answers the phone and the voice mail is full.. for months! Ugh. Very Not Ideal.
In the mean time, if you have any ideas or know anyone with a studio to rent that doesn't mind all levels of bassoonering going on next door, Leave a Comment!
This image greeted me in my tiny little book of Chagall postcards, the book I love so that it still contains all of its postcards. The giantness of the clock, looming and ticking behind the tiny figure at the window speaks well to my life of late. The clock is always ticking. In this age of devices and strategies and gimmicks to save time we seem to have less of it than ever before. So many things eating into the time we used to spend deliberately savoring things like relaxing in the backyard, cloud-gazing, or people watching.
My daughter said something that got me thinking about blogs today, specifically my own. She and I were having lunch, discussing her probable evening plans with a friend who will be sleeping over. I was shocked to hear she might prefer to watch “The Smurfs” over “Edward Scissorhands”. Now, don’t me get wrong. I do love a good Smurf yarn, but choosing the tiny blue nincompoops over the incomparable Johnny Depp in one of his best roles? WHAT?! To be fair, I have not seen the new Smurfs reboot and she has only seen a teeny portion of One Of the Best Movies Of My Adolescence, but still. She gave some defense of her ridiculous choice that I didn’t listen to and my defense? Because.. Johnny Depp. The ultimate teen chick flick! Just about any Johnny Depp movie (not “Donnie Brasco” and the like though, since it’s about the mafia and mafia = Guy flick) may qualify as a “chick flick” because.. Johnny Depp!
This led to a lamentation on my behalf that I couldn’t conceive of an instance in which I might write “Because, Johnny Depp” on my own blog. My blog is and always has been bassoon-centric (which likely explains the vast readership of two, in all probability also bassoonists). But my dear daughter, with her wonderful sense of humor and her generation whatever’s lack of delineation, countered with, “Why not?”....
Freelance bassoonist and carpenter of the reedy persuasion in Tucson, AZ.
Habits of Musicians
Have Bassoon Will Cook
The Pedantic Bassoonist
Double Reed Ltd.