Just finished playing second violin for the final show of BUGS’ Pirates of Penzance. It was fun, and not as hard as I thought it would be to get back into playing after nearly nine years without picking up a bow. No, I didn’t play brilliantly, but I didn’t play all that brilliantly as a teenager, either, so fair’s fair.
I did, however, forget how much work it was! After playing 4-6 hours a day for just over a week, my body feels like it’s about to fall apart. Luckily, I get to take a long break now.
Gilbert and Sullivan is lots of fun to play (but harder than it looks!), and I would be thrilled to do it again, though I doubt I’ll ever get the chance.
I had figured this was a very long-term goal, and had no real plans for getting it done. Then an opportunity fell into my lap: I heard that the local university (and my alma mater) was putting on a production of Pirates of Penzance and desperately needed violinists. In fact, their need was so desperate, they didn’t even request an audition!
So basically, there was no way I could justify not doing it (although I tried!). I picked up the music last week (second violin, doesn’t look too taxing), and tomorrow is my first rehearsal.
Problems: just as when I was a kid, I can’t seem to bring myself to practice. I have picked it up in order to find out exactly how rusty I was, and I was encouraged to find that I wasn’t all that bad. Not significantly worse, anyway, than I used to be after going a summer without playing. So I tuned up, played through some scales, and ran through my favorite pieces a few times.
BUT I still haven’t played through the performance pieces. And I’m sure everyone else has been practicing away, perfecting the difficult sections in preparation for our first rehearsal, and yes, that scares me. But the thing is, I HATE playing orchestral pieces by myself! They weren’t meant to be heard alone, and they just sound stupid.
I know, I know: I am a bad, stubborn kid. I always was. I really hope I can pull this off without making a total ass of myself, though.
I played violin consistently from age 5 to age 18. I wasn’t bad, though certainly not at a level to go professional. I always hated lessons, hated practicing, but I absolutely loved performing with the orchestra… I’ll probably never get that chance again. Still, I think taking lessons as an adult is probably much less stressful than it was as a kid, so I’d like to try again. I miss having that kind of music in my life…