Saturday, August 19, 2006

Last night in Melbourne

Well this is my last night in Melbourne for a couple of weeks. Today was spent shopping for sunscreen, tropical-strength insect repellent and other such essentials. I have just made sure that my ipod is loaded with everything I might possibly want to listen to, and my underwear is all washed! I had dinner with Anne and Jeff, and spent a beautiful hour chatting with Anne beside the fire.

In a way I am sad to be leaving my little house, even if it is only for two weeks. I have really settled in here since I moved in February, and I feel so comfortable and very much myself at home. It will be nice to know that my home will be waiting for me when I return from my journey into the unknown, and that, no matter what happens out in the bush, there is a safe place for me to retreat to back here in Melbourne.

I have no idea what to expect from this expedition, and I am trying to keep my pre-conceptions and assumptions to a minimum. I want to approach everything with an open mind and heart, because I think that is the way I will gain most and grow from the experience.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

"Music" from the Natural World

Musicians have always been fascinated with birdsong, and there's a bit of a new age craze for making music from whale song... is the next big thing volcano music?

Thanks to the Well-Tempered Blog for the link.

More about DasArts

The overseas artists who us VCAites will be travelling and collaborating with on the Navigators Project are all studying at DasArts, a multi-disciplinary arts college in Amsterdam. Richard Murphet, one of the artistic directors for the project, has written an article about his visit to DasArts here.

DasArts also have a blog about the project here.

I'm counting down the days until I get on that plane to Cairns! Only 3 sleeps to go...

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Navigators Project

In one week I will be flying to far north Queensland to spend two weeks exploring ideas and themes surrounding the landing of the Duyfken 400 years ago. I am taking part in the Navigators Project, a collaboration between the VCA and the Dutch arts collegeDasArts, which will result in a performance for the Melbourne Festival in October.

I think this is going to be quite an intensive experience. There are 24 artists from completely diverse backgrounds and with different methods of working. We are all going to spend two weeks in the outback, and will visit three Indigenous communities during that time. I feel as though I am travelling to another country, even though I won't be crossing any national boundaries.

The DasArts people arrived in Melbourne yesterday, and we are all meeting together for the first time this afternoon. I think the journey is about to begin...

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Spring is coming

The sun is shining. My windows are open. The magnolia is nearly in flower.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Everything is hard

"I finally decided that everything is hard."

It explains why the pros will labor endlessly over a piece which might be graded as intermediate. It also explains why us non-pros should too. There's as much JSB in one of his Little Preludes as there is in one of his Partitas. Each is worth infinite effort.

I like the idea of pieces of music being worth "infinite effort" no matter what their "technical" difficulty is. It is so easy to spend hours practicing something with lots of notes-per-second and not spend so much time on the slower works. But really, no matter how "easy" it might be to play the notes, that is not making music. Music happens when, as my teacher says "you have an attidude to each note on the page", when each note has it's own place and meaning in our soul - and that takes timeand effort. Infinite effort, in fact.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Friday, August 04, 2006

Balloon lands at VCA

The one morning I decide to come into work late something exciting happens at work!!

Update: Video here

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Men of Mortuaries

From the lovely Stephanie I am led to this!! Wrong, but entertaining... and slightly creepy. Still, it's all for a good cause, I guess!

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Kenneth Gilbert Masterclass

I played for Kenneth Gilbert in a masterclass held at Melbourne Uni today. Out of the six people who performed, I was the only one who didn't play Bach! I think he was quite pleased when I got up and stated that I was going to present the d minor unmeasured prelude from d'Anglebert's third harpsichord suite. I think I played it well, although I didn't feel quite as settled as I would have liked. He seemed to think it was good, though, and just thought that I could have a few more pauses - in fact he told me "not to be afraid of silences".

So that's one piece pretty much ready for my recital in November. Now I've really got to get cracking on the Bach concerto!