Saturday, October 25, 2008

Week 43 of year 2008 on the double bass

19 Oct 2008, Sun: It has been quite a while since I practised Keyper's Romance and Rondo. It was a delightful experience to practise it again and to realised that I was a little more fluid in my playing and had more confidence to deal with the technical aspects of this work.

At the same time, there's still work to be done to improve intonation and rhythm. I worked with the metronome clicking away. Thank goodness that I had finally invested in a new metronome, and it's so loud that I can consciously listen to it and play along with the tempo that it beats.

20 Oct 2008, Mon: I practised selected passages from the second and the third movements of Marcello's Sonata in G major at a slow tempo, with the metronome. The goal was to achieve a good intonation and a good sense of rhythm. More practice to go!

22 Oct 2008, Wed: I spent time practising extremely slowly with a metronome the first one-third of Pachelbel's Canon in D arranged by David Heyes for the double bass quartet. I focused on clarity of articulation and intonation. I like the way this piece sounds on the double bass.

23 Oct 2008, Thu: It was double bass lesson. The lesson was located at a new location and it took me a while to find the place. The new location brought me to familiar parts of Singapore, which was very near where I had studied during my junior college years.

The lesson started with sight-reading studies of orchestral excerpts. I still need lots of work on sight-reading!

I attempted to play the entire Marcello's Sonata in G major for memory upon my tutor's urging. I could manage the first and second movements, yet it was a challenge to play from memory for the remaining movements. Thereafter, I played with the score. More work to be done.

I also played selected passages from Keyper's Romance and Rondo. It was getting more fun to play this work as I have gained more competence technically.

24 Oct 2008, Fri: I did not practise on the double bass, but I went to listen to The Bass Line. I realised how important it is to have a strong right-hand technique in order to articulate every single note and to ensure that the double bass sings so beautifully and clearly that it would still be heard precisely even with a piano accompaniment. More practice on my end. I am feeling inspired.

Meantime, I am pondering if I should resit DipABRSM in Music Performance (Double Bass) next May or next September. Both have its own merits and demerits. The thing is that I will be sitting for ABRSM Grade 8 Theory examinations next March, so I need to make sure I have enough time to prepare for both theory and practical exams, while not getting myself caught in an examination-frenzy game. Wish me good luck!

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