Started the lesson with double stop scales, C major one octave using Bunting regime - 8 ticks per bow, no vibrato and with solid tone starting with up bow, then 12 ticks with dynamics p to mf crescendo, then with vibrato first slow then triplet.
Next comes G major starting on the G string, then G minor harmonic followed by G minor melodic. During the tuning of her cello, Deryn exclaimed, "My G string keeps going flat!" and we both laughed out loud. Apparently, this shouldn't have the effect it did on proper musicians but obviously, we are rebels.
Having warmed up sufficiently in G minor, we're now in the right frame to play Vivaldi's RV 531. I play second cello part, ie. the bass of the bass.
RV 531 notes
- Watch bowing and intonation; ie. fingering.
I found that I tend to prefer playing with others in equal footing rather than the solo repertoires that cello learners seem to gravitate towards. It was only recently that I realise this was ok to be. It also mildly suggests why I wasn't really enjoying learning the solo pieces as much as I should, even with piano accompaniment.
"When playing cello sonatas, my teacher William Pleeth used to insist that you use a music stand, even if it was empty. When you play a sonata for cello and piano from memory, he said, you change the listener’s perception from ‘chamber music’ into ‘soloist plus accompaniment’." ~ David Watkin, The Art of Continuo.
Deryn spoke about this briefly when we discussed the relationships of accompanying mucisians. Deryn was in the school of always using a music stand, much like the quote above. This recent piece by David Watkin on the art of continuo playing echoes my thoughts about this. Wish I was able to attend his shows at the Cello Unwrapped Festival! This cello focused year-long festival sounds insanely unmissable but sadly, all the way in London. Boo. I hope they do this every year but all around the country, not just London.
I'm actively looking for cello duets to play with my sister and one of our favorite pieces to play is Shostakovich's Preludium from 5 pieces for 2 violins transposed for cello. I brought in the sheet music for Deryn and we played it through, even tackling fingering for the treble clef bits that I've been struggling with, with optimum results.
This prompted Deryn to bring out the Vivaldi concerto which didn't even occur to me to consider playing. You'll see why from the video below, hopefully! Those ornamentations are swoon :}
Turns out, it is all about the illusion of difficult passages, thankfully. Here's the piece on IMSLP if you want to have a go.
Learning the cello as an adult started as a dare but has now turned into an ongoing love affair; I hope to one day make her sing to her full potential. In the meantime, all spare time and moments are dedicated to this wonderful instrument as I am unable to think about anything else, much to the dismay of my other half :}
This is an attempt to remember the classes I have taken so that I don't forget.