Saturday, August 18, 2007

Another music week down

The first week of August is the busiest for us, as all four kids are involved in the Suzuki Valhalla Institute. The second VSSM week is less busy, but still very hectic. Erin is fully enrolled each year as a piano student, with choral and string add-on ensembles, while the younger three attend family choir, and I work as full-time taxi driver to my kids running between two communities several times a day, rehearsing and playing in the faculty concert, and looking after various organizational and logistical duties around the music school.

Erin had a reasonably good week, considering that anything would have felt like a let-down after the heady SVI week. She reconnected with some piano friends from last year, and sang a brilliant solo with the adult choir. (Or so I'm told; she informed me that she would not agree to sing the solo on the concert unless I was out of the building, so I dutifully left.) Her orchestra experience was a bit of a disappointment. She had chosen the orchestra option in the hope of being in the most advanced orchestra which has in the past done some brilliant performances of advanced repertoire. However, this year the most advanced kids were skimmed off the orchestra to do exclusively chamber music, and so the challenge in the top-level orchestra was not to Erin's liking. She coasted through. The performance was excellent, very polished and tight, but it was of fairly tame stuff, at least for a 13yo in the second violin section -- Bartok's Rumanian Dances and the first movement of Mozart's Eine Kleine Nachtmusik. Still, there was lots of busy-ness and stimulation during the week with piano friends, all the choir music to learn, and the various performances (mine, hers, the younger kids').

By contrast the third week is much tamer. Only one of mine (Erin) is involved, and only in the evenings. There's only one concert. Wow, piece of cake!

So this weekend really represented the end of the craziness for me. It feels great! And how did we celebrate? We invited two of our favourite faculty members over for brunch and then they and the kids washed their car.

It was a lovely fun time. The car-wash was by necessity, but has the feel of an annual tradition. I wouldn't be at all suprised if next August 16 finds us all washing that white Toyota again.

Erin also managed to squeeze a lesson in with T., who has, I think, given her a little to go on in her Kabalevsky concerto and made suggestions for one or two new pieces -- like the Kreisler Praeludium & Allegro which I'm sure Erin will love.

Where has the summer gone, though?


  1. I simply must comment on this - the fact that Erin wouldn't sing the solo if you were there. That was a familiar pattern of my life! A couple of times I ended up in the town finals for public speaking in my elementary days and wouldn't let my parents attend to hear me. Certain sporting events I banned them from too. I thought I was the only kid to have ever done this, not to mention the only kid whose parents would respect such wishes. Good for you for listening to her! I know how she feels and how important it is to her, likely more than you even know, to be able to spread her wings without parental eyes upon each and every move. I really must strive to remember this should the same situation arise with one of my own. So far, neither one have expressed qualms with my witnessing their performances . . .

  2. I was allowed to go and listen to one sons solo vocal performance as long as I agreed to sit behind a pillar...

  3. Anonymous8:16 am

    Wow isnt Fiona looking tall in that picture.

    Twice at Erins age I totally didnt tell my mother I'd had pieces published in magazines until months after the event. But I'd never get away with doing a concert without my dad in attendance.

  4. Anonymous, it might be worth pointing out that the three other people in that photo are of quite, er, diminuitive size themselves, LOL!


This blog is moving to archive-only status. Please consider posting comments instead at the active version of the blog at

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.