Sunday, January 14, 2007

Week Two of 2007 on the doublebass

Earlier this year, I strived to practise at least four days per week, for at least 15 minutes on each of the days. I have achieved this goal for the week two of the year 2007.

Since I consider Sunday as the first day of the week, let me start writing about 7 Jan 2007. I can't exactly remember what I had practised on that day, but I remember that I definitely had spent at least 15 minutes practising Emily's Suicidal Tendencies, and not forgetting, the double bass solo part for Tchaikovsky's Neopolitanian Dance (from "Swan Lake").

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On 8 Jan 2007, I had taken half-a-day of leave of work hoping to find time to practise, but my practice hours were dramatically reduced because of the "missing double bass". Thank goodness that it was "lost and found". Anyway, I practised at least 20 minutes on my own (on one of the orchestra's other double basses) before 6 p.m., the supposedly time to start the quartet rehearsal.

Quartet rehearsal started later than scheduled, but I was practising on the double bass while waiting, except for a few short breaks that I had taken. Rehearsal only ended at 9.30 p.m., but after I settled the missing bass issue with the person responsible for it, I continued to practise for a very short while. Conservatively, I would have practised at least 3 hours on the double bass that day, if not, more.

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9 Jan 2007: Tuesday, I took half-a-day leave in the afternoon to practise. The main objective for my practice that day was to work on playing Emily's Suicidal Tendencies. I also spent some time practising Dragonetti's Solo in e minor though not too long. G major scale has become part of my regular warm-up regime, so it was definite that I had played at least 10 minutes of G major scale.

I can't remember how long I had spent practising that day, but it was definitely more than 15 minutes.

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10 Jan 2007: Wednesday was the day of the concert. In the morning, I had spent quite some time playing G major scales and Emily's Suicidal Tendencies. About close to an hour, I think.

In the afternoon, since I had arrived way before the scheduled time for loading the double basses onto the lorry, I had spent at least 15 minutes practising in the storeroom where the double basses are kept.

For the rehearsal, it was another several minutes of playing, but well, it didn't matter if it didn't count.

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11 Jan 2007: That was the day I had my double bass lesson with my tutor, MJ. I realised that he gave me 1.5 hours of lesson instead of the usual 1 hour. We did quite a bit of things that day. I played one-third of the second movement of Dragonetti's Solo in e minor until MJ and myself decided I may not play Dragonetti's for my exams.

MJ demonstrated to me how several of the double bass DipABRSM exams pieces would sound. I sightread Marcello's Sonata in G major. It was fun. I also sightread a quarter of Faure Sicilienne as well as Apres un Reve, Op. 7 no. 1. Sicilienne is nice. Apres un Reve makes quite good use of the lower registers, but I felt it was not a piece that would go well with my other selected exams pieces. In that short 1.5 hours, I managed to have a clearer picture on my programme for the DipABRSM exams, and felt confident that I could sit for the exams later this year. In short, it was a good lesson.

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12 Jan 2007: No practice on this day. I went for a concert by the Singapore Symphony Orchestra. But perhaps I was too tired that day, I wasn't able to give my fullest attention throughout the concert.

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13 Jan 2007: I was basically at home for most of that day, and had spent a few hours practising on the double bass. Here are what I had practised: G and C major scales, Marcello's Sonata in G major, first half of Faure's Sicilienne (because I can't quite figure how to play some sections of the second half), Keyper's Romance & Rondo.

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Concluding, for the second week of 2007, I had practised on the double bass for at least 15 minutes per day on six of the days. Well beyond my target set. Would anyone care to give me some encouragement please?

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Meantime, let me start writing down what I had practised today, so that I can write a similar progress-report post at the end of week three. I was practising intermittenly in the late afternoon and the night:
- C major scales
- Marcello's Sonata in G major
- first half of Faure's Sicilienne
- the melody for Pachelbel's Canon in D major, scored for a double bass quartet, arranged by David Heyes

4 comments:

Simple American said...

Glas to hear you are still on track. *high 5*

laymank said...

hi, first time here, after reading the 'ad' in SA's blog! hehehe...

i admire your passion and determinant in your music interest. coincidentally, i too decided to learn music for the first time in my whole life. imagine someone who knows nuts about music except for karaoke. hahaha...

and i really hope that i can have the passion to persevere through like you did.

p/s: i dare not even look at the exercise book my friend gave me. :P

Ivan Chew said...

Hi PY, you should sign up for an Odeo.com account, and upload your practice pieces. I'd be keen to hear them (and if you give permission, I could even sample some tracks). If nothing else, it might serve as a gauge of how well you progress :)

oceanskies79 said...

SA: Yeah! *High 5*

Laymank: Welcome. Thanks for visiting. Music heals, I think. It inspires too.

About your decision to learn music: One step at a time, and see how things go?

There were times when I had considered whether to just stop playing, but it seems that in the end, music is everywhere for me to even give up on it.

Ivan: Let me check Odeo.com out. Hmmm..actually, I am short of appropriate recording facilities to record my practice pieces.

Maybe I should say that social workers are so underpaid that if I had the money, I won't buy a MP3 player-with-recorder, or even a video-cam, I would rather save, or spend on the double bass.