Monday, October 15, 2007


A Christmas gig

Our strings orchestra has been invited to present a one-hour christmas "concert" at a local visitor's center open-house/christmas party. It happens to fall on the same day that the big orchestra is giving a concert in Homer, so five or six of our most experienced members will not be able to play with us. Without their expert support we were hesitant to accept the offer, but agreed tonight to go ahead and do it. Our cello trio, Cellocracy, will be playing three or four pieces, so we'll reconvene our weekly trio rehearsals on Wednesday.

I'm glad to have something to work towards these next two months. Besides being a good musical alternative from the daily practice routines, it also gives me a chance to play more with others.

The Larsen A string I put on the other day seemed to help smooth out the sound on the upper end.

I read an interesting discussion about wolves on Cello Chat - from back in July. I've tried to follow these threads as they pop up from time to time, but I'd missed this one. Several posters described their wolves as I've come to know mine - often a booming sound that seems to move around from note to note and even from string to string for no apparent reason (I'm almost convinced that this is due to changes in temperature and humidity). They talked about having to make frequent adjustments to their Bice wolf eliminators to combat it. I had started to think that my cello was flawed, or that I was using the wrong strings, or that I was just unable to understand or adequately explain what was going on to my teacher and the luthier. Just knowing that my experiences with my wolf aren't unique has helped me accept it and begin to think about how to deal live with it.


I want to thank everyone who offered such thoughtful and informative comments to my recent posts. What a support group we've become! From novices to professionals, from beginner students to expert teachers; regardless of experience or abilities, we all share a passion for our cellos - one that drives us and challenges us and at times frustrates us, but one that sometimes transports us. Sharing that passion through our blogs and comments is bringing us together in new and interesting ways. Again, thanks.

Oh yeah. I don't know anyone who plays classically who doesn't pray at the Larsen A altar. It's almost unfair how much difference it makes. I used to go for 4 Larsens, but their Tungsten Cs are so hit or miss....I feel it must be a quality control issue. I've had 3 or 4 go false right out of the packet, and at $70-90 a pop, that's a little rich for my blood.

Also, there is one definitive cure for a wolf, but it involves an acetylene torch and a few months of regret....
If Cellocracy has possible interest in playing my quartet arrangement of Carol of the Bells, posted on CBN, you're welcome to give it a try. The first part is a bit difficult, grade 5 or 6. The other parts are not difficult; the one spot in the 2nd cello part that goes up to a B could be put down an octave.
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