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Samira

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  1. Here's a link to a generally good review in the Philadelphia Inquirer: http://www.philly.com/mld/philly/9814831.htm?1c What I like best is the following quote in the article (italics are mine): "But the best qualities in Hahn's performance were present in her first outing with the piece four years ago with an amateur orchestra at Johns Hopkins University. It was always her piece, with her Olympian temperament acting like a beacon amid the music's thickly orchestrated emotional turbulence." Nice to know the Philadelphia Inquirer's music critic still remembers that concert in a positive light. It was a fantastic experience for the members of the orchestra, for sure. I only wish I could hear a recording from THAT performance!
  2. On the other hand, Menuhin at 24 wasn't what he was at 16, either!
  3. And how old was Menuhin when that recording was made? 15 or 16? So would you really think that he was so much more mature a performer than Hilary Hahn at 24? I'm really looking forward to this release. As I have probably said at every opportunity here, her performance with the commmunity orchestra in which I play was her first orchestral performance of the Elgar. That was in June of 2000 so I have been waiting to see how far she would take the piece. I thought she played it with a lot of passion and sheer stamina, plus it was typically very clean and seemingly effortless. Isn't it the longest violin concerto? It's very demanding of the orchestra, too. I was a little surprised to see that it is paired with Lark Ascending. There is a Kennedy recording of the same two pieces from 1997. Begs for a direct comparison, doesn't it?
  4. I've had one since September. I'm not sitting in front of it at the moment and haven't used it for triplet or other fancy beats, but I think it does that. I bought it because 1) it is indeed loud, certainly loud enough that it worked nicely when I was playing in a piano trio (and the volume is adjustable, and you can choose between two different tones), and 2) it has a chromatic tone generator where you can have it play continuously; I guess people use this to tune to specific pitches but my daughter's teacher has her use it as a drone to help her hear the fundamental pitch in her scales or tricky sections of her pieces. I tried it myself and it really does help! It also has an automatic chromatic tuner function (lights up to tell you when you are playing in tune). The only problem I've had with it is that sometimes my daughter or I forget to turn it off when it is in tuning mode and it runs the battery down because it is constantly picking up all the noise in the room.
  5. So East Texas folks...how was the concert this past weekend?
  6. Her name is not listed in the faculty directory for either the Conservatory or the Preparatory (hasn't been for at least several years). I don't know if she is actively teaching privately, either. I know that she was at one of Hilary Hahn's Baltimore performances in 2000 (and probably others since then).
  7. You can take a look at the Finale family of products at http://www.finalemusic.com/ Unfortunately, only the full version of Finale is currently available for OSX, but you can run NotePad (which is free) under Classic. I ended up buying Print Music because Finale NotePad wasn't up to tasks like changing time signatures partway through a piece, and transpositions work better, etc. I've been happy with it; it's all I need because I don't do any MIDI stuff. They promise that they will be releasing an OSX version sometime this year.
  8. Congratulations on your assistantship, Jesse! I think Baltimore is a really exciting place to be doing chamber music these days. It is definitely a more active scene that it was even as recently as 5 years ago. Seems like during the regular season there are at least 3 or 4 interesting concerts to choose from every Sunday afternoon or evening, let alone all the stuff during the week at Peabody and elsewhere. (BTW, I saw a notice for your recital a couple of weeks ago when I was hurrying to my weekly lesson at the Prep, but it was literally about to start so I couldn't go...I hope it went well. I've also seen a poster or two about the Rivendell Quartet and hope to attend a concert sometime. I enjoyed meeting Liz last summer when I was observing for the week at Peabody Prep's string camp but I never really got to hear her play.) Best wishes to everyone else as well!
  9. "...a louder shade of warm..." I like that, it's very poetic!
  10. As I noted in another thread about shoulder rests, I was able to order several rests from Shar, take them to my daughter's teacher who helped her winnow it down to one (the Bon Musica, as it happened), and then return them. I made sure the return policy would cover this AHEAD OF TIME (because I did have to pay for them up front and wait for the credit to my account after returning them) and of course was very careful to repack them exactly as they had been before we opened them. As for other Kun-like rests, I used to use a standard Kun. When my daughter was trying out rests I took the opportunity to test a few myself. I wasn't particularly unhappy with the Kun, but the foam pad was beginning to wear out and it seemed like a good time to tinker with things. I tried the Kun Bravo and found it actually does not feel exactly like a standard Kun (I didn't like it as much). I liked the plastic Mach One and switched to that. Then I got a maple Mach One as a gift and found that its shape IS a little different from the plastic one (and I like it better). I had a lot more trouble at first getting the maple Mach One to stay put than either my old Kun or the plastic Mach One, but once I got the right combination of leg heights and the angle across the back of my fiddle I stopped having problems (much to my relief since I really like it). So even within a brand, the differences are not always so subtle and sometimes they do matter.
  11. They don't all weigh the same...keep that in mind if you decide to keep a rest but want to try a different one. I don't see people talking about the weight as a separate issue so much but it is a factor. One of my teachers, a violist, actually likes a heavy shoulder rest. (Not me, though!)
  12. When my daughter's teacher wanted her to try out a bunch of different shoulder rests, I ordered them from Shar, took them to the lesson, and the teacher weeded out all but one. We opened each package very carefully, and I then carefully repacked the ones that we didn't want and sent them back to Shar. I asked ahead of time if their return policy really would apply to this sort of situation and was assured it did. So that's one way you can try out some rests without having to buy a bunch that you end up never using. I think that you really can tell pretty quickly if there is one that is just never going to work for you so you can at least narrow it down to a style of rest.
  13. You don't say exactly which muscles you are "feeling" after your practice sessions...and I'm certainly no expert, but I'm not convinced that it is automatically bad or wrong that you are "feeling it" in your muscles. I agree that they shouldn't hurt. But couldn't it be normal to feel some fatigue when you are just beginning to use those muscles, as with any exercise that causes you to use your muscles in new ways? In other words, is it uncomfortable fatigue or just a new awareness of certain muscles? Maybe without the shoulder rest you aren't using muscles that you should be and that's why you feel them when you do use the shoulder rest. Just a thought.
  14. I have a GEWA also and I agree, there is a different name for its style...but I don't know what it is, either! It works well for me.
  15. I like Sheet Music Plus too, haven't had any problems with them. I have also ordered quite a bit of music from Hutchins and Rea (www.hutchinsandrea.com); the prices are not discounted as far as I know but whenever I've had a question I've gotten prompt and thorough advice via email from the owner (my sister reported the same with questions on the phone) and my orders have shipped without any problems. They carry a wide variety of publishers so it's a good place to go if you need a particular edition of something. When I am ordering other stuff, I look at both Shar and Southwest Strings. Southwest often comes out a bit cheaper so sometimes I've gone with them. I also like the fact that for a lot of their sheet music they have a little sample so you can see what it looks like on the page (wish everyone did that). But I find Shar has been very reliable and their customer service has always been pleasant for me to deal with. My orders arrive pretty quickly, too. I haven't ordered from Southwest nearly as much but so far, no problems, and I always order online.
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