So we are done.
With opera, that is!
Now it’s on to symphony and the choral concert for this week. I have ten services from today through next Sunday, along with some students. Sadly I have to cancel a few students, due to the afternoon conflicts. I hate doing that, but ah, the life of a performing musician … so it goes!
Playing the Poulenc (La voix humaine) really wasn’t difficult (aside from making sure I counted measures of rest properly!). Toward the end there are a few pretty little ditties that I enjoyed playing. The first one (on the left side) is “handed” to me from the English horn. The second is one I hand over to her. Fun times! (Normally I don’t really enjoy seeing the other part in my book, but for the Poulenc it was awfully handy to see the English horn along with my part … made counting easier!)
By the way, if you click on the picture you’ll see a larger rendition. It’s still not entirely easy to read, but oh well ….
Now the Leoncavallo … well … would you believe I spent over two hours on two measure, and continued to play it nearly daily, to keep it in my fingers? It’s not that the lick is all THAT difficult, but playing it “in time” was the challenge. After I had it in my fingers, I played a recording over and over and came in on time to make sure that I could be there every time. Fortunately the lick is about 30 seconds in to the entire work. Whether I got it or not, at least it was over early so I could enjoy the rest. (I did manage to get it every time, but not in the way I liked. In truth there were two times that completely satisfied me. I’m picky that way.)
There were several other very fun things to play, but nothing that freaked me like those two measures above. Silly, eh? (By the way, I’m NOT the one who had to write “pic” above Ottavino … I do know that’s a piccolo!)
As you can see below, I also had two pages that had a bit of “cut ‘n paste” going on. This is because Opera San Jos´doesn’t hire the off stage or banda musicians. Instead we pit folk add those parts to ours. I really think it’s too bad, as it really does give a different feel to have an instrument from off stage or on stage when written that way. Oh well! When I was ill I just couldn’t see taking off and having someone come in and make sense of the cut and paste. It’s one thing to have rehearsed it — it’s really quite easy to follow. But a person who had never played it … well … that concerned me. So sick or not, I was there. I’m glad, too, because I hate canceling out of anything. Not my style!
Here’s the first tiny cut and paste (see the bottom of the page):
Here’s the very large cut and paste (only the top 5 lines):
After this page we move to two oboes who are to supposed to be bagpipes … not a bad idea: if our unison is out of tune, well, it’s bagpipes so no biggie … right? (Or not.) The top of page 21 is a killer for me, by the way. I’m not sure if anyone else struggles with that.
After we are done with that I have a little solo that is to be played by the pit oboist and then I once again play the offstage part from the pit.