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viola-mom

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  1. As far as I know, it's fine to play an unaccompanied piece for NYSSMA All-State auditions. If a piece is meant to be played with accompaniment, then it is required to play it that way. If it is an unaccompanied piece, of course no pianist is needed. I do think it is a good experience for students to learn how to play with an accompanist, but for NYSSMA the bottom line is to choose a piece that the student likes to play and plays well. So go for the Bach if that is the case. Double check with your school orchestra teacher though, just to be sure.
  2. Hi Anna, Because I am posting rather than my daughter, I am reluctant to post her name here, but if you email me (my address should be in my profile) I'll be happy to give you more information, and tell you how to find her for tomorrow's rehearsal. I know that she and her college roommate (who also plays in NYYS) would be delighted to talk with you about Barnard, the Columbia Orchestra and anything else related to their experiences. I'm glad you posted!
  3. Hello Alvin, It takes courage to transfer. Congratulations to you for realizing that you want to take another path. My daughter has also just completed her first college semester. She landed at Barnard, which is part of Columbia. I'd like to encourage you to seriously consider Columbia as an excellent place to pursue the academics that you want, while still having wonderful musical opportunities. The Columbia University Orchestra is outstanding. You won't find them on the level of CIM or another conservatory of course, but they are incredibly talented and dedicated musicians. My daughter is thrilled with the conductor who also conducts at Juilliard and MSM. If you go to your browser and put in "columbia university orchestra" you will get to their website, where there are recordings from the December concert. My daughter is studying with a fantastic teacher who is on the Columbia faculty, but is also a well-known violist in NY. The instrumental faculty is first rate. There is also the option of auditioning for lessons at Juilliard--my daughter steered clear of that one, but you might be interested. There is a chamber music program with faculty coaches. Lessons and chamber music are taken for credit. There is a Bach Society Orchestra, a Klezmer band and numerous opportunities to play within the university community. My daughter also plays with New York Youth Symphony which accepts players through age 22. Her musical opportunities have been fantastic and the academics are first-rate. What more can I say? I think it is a wonderful choice for a student who wants to combine academic and musical opportunities. Good luck with making this decision. If you want any more information, feel free to PM me.
  4. I've been this route before! Couldn't watch Kurt Masur's farewell--just too much to do in Saratoga in the summer! Forgot to tape it. If anyone did, and would be willing to make and send me a copy, I'd be most appreciative. Of course I will cover costs of tape, mailing, etc. Or if I could borrow one? Again--mailing both ways on me of course. I made a Maestronet friend this way, and it has been a wonderful relationship. Ready to try again! Thanks in advance.
  5. I support the idea of having a get-together in the Saratoga area this summer. Of course I live there so it is super-easy for me! Long-hair has offered to put up a few people. I can do the same. It doesn't seem that this will be a huge group so I think we can work out the accomodations issue. I am posting a link to the SPAC website. Please look at the schedule for the Philadelphia orchestra, and lets seriously set a date. www.spac.org
  6. A few words about Saratoga, if we are still in the running. It seems that LongHair would like to make his place available, and I would love to show Saratoga off! Timing is everything here, unfortunately. From the last week of July until Labor Day we have the horse racing meet, which means hotel and restaurant prices skyrocket. I can host a few people at my home, and would love to have everyone. It just isn't possible. However, motels in Albany might be an option. They don't go quite as crazy there as we do in Saratoga. Of course, the positive side to Saratoga is the residency of the Philadelphia Orchestra, which coincides with the racing meet. I can give you an idea of some of the programs, and if the Saratoga idea comes to fruition we can have an evening on the lawn at the orchestra. July 31 Opening Night--YoYo Ma (Dvorak) August 1--Sarah Chang (Brahms) August 7--Gil Shaham (Beethoven) August 9--Beethoven Triple (Argerich, Haendal, Maisky) August 14--Repin (Tchaikovsky) Maisky (Rococco Variations) August 16--Bell (Mendelssohn) August 16--Kim (Bruch) Mainly weeknights, which I know could be a problem. There are other programs too, but I chose the ones with string concertos. If a group of any size wants to give this a try, I'll be thrilled to help coordinate.
  7. A few words from someone who just watched her daughter go through this decision-making process. It is a very difficult and important decision and much thought needs to happen, because you are talking about two very different approaches to a college education. The joint programs that were alluded to (ex Eastman and Univ of Rochester) sound wonderful on paper, but they are not easy to implement because of the issue of two campuses, often miles apart. A college student has precious little time anyway, and my daughter looked at Eastman/UR and NEC/Tufts and decided quickly that was not the route for her. Oberlin or Rice could work more easily as there is one campus, but she wasn't interested in those places geographically. My daughter ended up applying to six liberal arts colleges. She truly wants to pursue music, but she wants all academic options open to her as well. She has applied to one program involving conservatory cross-registration, which is her first choice, but the conservatory and the college are 4 short blocks apart. For anyone who is serious about music in a liberal arts environment, I have a few suggestions: Look at websites, especially for the music department. Find out who the teacher(s) are for your instrument. Email or call those teachers and ask if they will listen to you play when you visit or if you can send a tape. Most of the time these teachers are thrilled to hear from a prospective student who has taken an interest in meeting them, and they will give you positive feedback, send recommendations to admissions, etc. You can also contact the orchestra conductor. You might be invited to listen to a rehearsal or even sit in, and the conductor might listen to you as well and send a recommendation. This is a win-win for everyone. My daughter followed that process and it has been very gratifying. She now has a teacher and/or conductor contact at every school she has applied to. They know about her and they have all given her wonderful feedback. I can't advise as to the conservatory or college question--that is so personal to each individual. but for anyone who is considering a traditional liberal arts experience, I advise strongly that you do what my daughter did.
  8. SARATOGA COMMERCIAL! Saratoga is 30 miles north of Albany, NY, the state capital. It is a beautiful place to live--at least for three seasons. I am not a winter person and it is cold here right now! Don't like it. But we have NY City Ballet and Philadelphia Orchestra for three weeks each during the summer and a fabulous chamber music festival. Quite a few fingerboard and former fingerboard members have visited me and I extend an invitation, as I always do, to anyone who wants to stop by if you're in the area, especially in the summer when we come alive. Ballston Spa, where Longhair's business will be, is 6 miles from Saratoga. I like the reunion idea a lot! Let's get to work on this.
  9. Hi you guys! Longhair I live in Saratoga. You bet I'll be down to see your new place. Best of luck. Hi, HKV. Maybe I'll see you there too!
  10. I am still around, still reading a few times a week and it is nice to be missed. As for me, I have many other projects going on right now that are taking up more of my attention. But I do follow what is going on here, when I can, and I do remember my posting days fondly. I can fill in some info about Theresa. She is just fine, still teaching music and her daughter is doing wonderfully at college. I talk with her every few weeks. She too, has some other things that occupy her time, but I will mention to her that she is sorely missed. Keep on keeping on.
  11. We also saw Joshua Bell play the Barber with the NY Phil, but on Wednesday night. I thought it was fantastic. The Barber is such a beautiful piece and I thought Joshua Bell did full justice to it. I was also delighted to hear a "conversation" between the soloist and the orchestra--I thought they meshed beautifully. Regarding the moving around: it didn't bother me. I hardly noticed. In fact I thought he was "dancing" far less than the last time I saw him, which was playing Brahms in August. I did see him turning around to look at the orchestra quite a bit, in what I thought was a very appropriate way. I'd see him again in a heartbeat.
  12. Rainyann, you've met my daughter. She is about 5'3", small build, narrow shoulders and isn't likely to grow any taller. She has been playing a 16" since she was about 14, with no problems. She absolutely insists that she needs a 16" to get the sound she wants, but doesn't have any desire to play anything bigger--ever. I would think that your son would eventually grow into something between 16" and 17". But then again, what do I know? I don't play! In your situation, I am not sure that I would go to great lengths (ha ha) to gain a quarter of an inch, when he is likely to want something a bit bigger at some point.
  13. Aaron; Again, congratulations to you. I know you have a wonderful, bright future whatever school you pick. My daughter applied early decision to Barnard College (part of Columbia, in New York City) and she should hear around Dec. 10. I'll let you know! Best regards, VM
  14. Aaron: How wonderful that you have been accepted to your first choice college! Congratulations! What is the school? My daughter has just applied, early decision, and is waiting, waiting, waiting. Until December 15 or so. Aren't you glad your school responded to you so early? Best of luck.
  15. Hello Cyn: If you get a chance to talk with Keith, please tell him that his former babysitter and next door neighbor says "hi". I think he'll know who you are talking about. And have a great time with him! He was a VERY funny kid 35 years ago.
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