Have fiddle. Will travel.

Have fiddle. Will travel.

I traveled abroad for the first time when I was 19. The only thing that I knew about travel was that I was supposed to have a camera and comfortable shoes. Most of my time in Europe was spent on my own. I would wander around cities, towns and countryside with my big camera snapping…

The pleasure of surprises

The pleasure of surprises

One of my favorite memories of college happened in a freshman English class. As the teacher was handing back our graded papers, he held mine back and read it to the class. I was so proud and, more importantly, surprised. That element of surprise imprinted the experience into my memory more than any other assignment…

The journey and the goal

The journey and the goal

As a young violinist, most of my pleasure from music came in the form of relief. I’d prepare for a concert, perform and then feel a sense of relief that faded by the next morning. I’d also experience a small feeling of contentment that would carry on for about a week. Working towards a goal…

Taking my music on vacation.

Taking my music on vacation.

When my parents started my brother, sister and me in music lessons, the goal that they looked towards throughout the long, expensive investment was performance. To have our name on a printed program. To have the lights trained on us. To have the audience’s conversations quieted as we walked on stage. These were the experiences…

Trait #1 of Life-Long Violinists

Trait #1 of Life-Long Violinists

I’m interested in understanding that rare violinist that continues to play long after lessons and school recitals are over. Common trait #1. Life-long players are recreational players. That is, most of their playing happens outside of a performance setting. When people think of an orchid, we think of the bloom of this plant. But if…

Bach revisited

Bach revisited

I grew up listening to the Bach Partitas and Sonatas for solo violin. Several of these pieces are ‘standards’ for the advanced violinist. Whenever I would listen to these pieces played at concerts or on recordings, they would be played with such grandiosity and seriousness that the pieces never appealed to me. It seemed to…