Monday, April 6, 2015

Great Plains Marimba Competition

Yay, good news!

I made the initial audio round cut for the Great Plains Marimba Competition! The coming Semi-Final and Final rounds will be held from June 17-20 in Oklahoma City at the Bass School of Music.

I'm excited to know that I've passed that first round, and pleased that my congratulatory email came with comments from Mike Burritt on my tape. I think that's rather nice, honestly - some feedback before the actual competition date.  But, I should admit that my rather prideful self read the comments and thought yes, I know that accuracy was excellent - thank you for noticing. And at other moments thought hey, yeah that part is rather difficult for everybody so...yeah, ok it sounds forced in my tape...guhhhhhhh he's right, need to work on that.

I hope they give feedback to everyone, even those who were eliminated. I remember when I got eliminated in Italy and really appreciated feedback from Emmanuel Sejourne, even though he said things that I had surmised myself. Sometimes it helps us to hear (or read) another person give us [gentle] criticism about our playing. Well, EMPHASIS on the GENTLE.

I was also very appreciative of the positivity and encouragement Burritt gave me in my comments. I can only imagine how tiring that gets, especially if some of it is just to be polite. Hopefully that's not the case here, but even if it is, it is appreciated. :)

The timing of the competition is a little stressful, as Casey and I will be leaving WV for VA at the end of June. Since he was recently appointed Director of Percussion Studies at James Madison University two weeks ago we have been frantically trying to figure out when and where we will move this summer. We have to contact a real estate agent and something about that makes me feel like a grown-up. When did that happen???? 

So, anyway, my preparation for this competition will consist of practice, practice, pack a box, practice, pack another box, take stuff to Goodwill, practice, practice. It will be an adventure, as it seems things always are.

Anyway, repertoire is a question for me. Semi-Finals are easy: play what I played on the tape. But for the Final round there is a 15-20 minute time limit and we are required to perform a new chamber piece by Mike Burritt and a free piece of our choice in that time.  I can't decide if I want to do the Bach Toccata that I've recorded or Casey's Etude in E minor. I've got both in the practice rotation right now, and plan on making a recording of Casey's piece even if I don't use it in the Final round.

My issue with the time limit is that we don't yet know how long the chamber piece is...so choosing the other piece is a little difficult. We're supposed to get the score soon and reply with rep choices by April 13, so I have one week to get this figured out!! Eek! [But also, YAY!]

I'm excited to meet all of my fellow competitors in June and hopefully make some new friends and new connections.




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