A number of years ago (at least eight and possibly more) I was playing a job in another and a visitor came to the pit to observe. He was a musician from a city somewhere in Southern California, and his friend was conducting the show. He was a really nice guy, and yes, he was an oboist.
During the intermission he commented on my involvement with the music. “You really like doing this, don’t you?” I admitted that I did. He proceeded to tell me that my symphony friends would treat me with disdain because of this, and then he also said, “You care too much.” He told me that I cared far too much about the music and that that could cause me a lot of problems.
I know he had a point. I know that I can use with a bit of relaxing and not getting so bothered by every little blip. But I fear complacency, and I would rather be at the end of “too much” than “too little”.
I still remember the gist of the conversation, even while I don’t have it word for word.
I hope I will continue to like what I do, be it a symphony job, an opera, a musical or something else. And I guess I really do hope I care too much.
I would hate to care less. I think it might make me careless.