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Audition Challenge Weeks 9 and 10

I'm not going to lie. This is getting really hard. Motivational issues aside, I feel like I'm hitting a wall. The usual length of time I take to prepare an audition is 7-8 weeks, and this challenge is 14! Ok, yeah, I failed a little at basic math and I had to compress weeks 9 and 10 into one week, but still. It's a lot of...this.

Add into the equation that this is a massive list, it's my second time preparing it in the last few months, my flute needs work (it's in the shop now, as of yesterday. This weeks video was filmed a few days ago.), AND I recently discovered that hard root beer tastes like how I imagined beer would taste when I was a kid.

This stuff is life.

Add into it a really fun but challenging gig with two of my favourite people over the weekend, and I haven't really felt that drive that usually gets me through an audition. My partner has even noticed and has had a really concerned talk with me about it.

I'm starting to see the pros and cons to this style of preparation, compared to my usual process.

Pro: I can really take my time to dissect each excerpt and think about every component on its own.

Con: I'm really good at overthinking to the point where I'm incapable of making a decision.

Pro: I have time to absorb the information I'm compiling for each piece, learning the skills more solidly with a greater chance they'll stick when I'm under pressure.

Con: Progress is much harder to track, and I have a habit of pushing too much early on. If I can't play a technical passage up to tempo right away I feel as though I'm wasting my time.

Pro: I can really take my time with the pieces that can use more work.

Con: I panic when I feel like I'm not covering everything. The temptation to barrel through the list and play everything is great.

Pro: I have more time to work on skills, and live my life because I don't need to spend 6 hours practicing before I go to work.

Con: HAHAHAHAHAHA 6 hours?? I'm barely holding off the tendinitis as it is.

This is the first gif that appeared when I searched for "ow." Not gonna lie, I do make that face when my tendinitis flares up.

Anyway, this week's video was all about some of the pieces that didn't make it onto the NY Phil challenge list. They're some of the pieces I would put on the "comfortable" column. Some that I'm least worried about. They're by no means perfect, but none of them keep me up at night anymore. This gave me a good opportunity to work on the beginnings of pieces as well as character and mood. The video was a dry run for the day - I played my usual warm up and exercises, turned on the camera and went at it. I'm glad I did it that way (not only because I don't like filming and I really don't like editing), but it gives me more practice with a one-shot performance. I know the areas that need a little/lottle more work now, and I can start planning out how to proceed from here.

Stay tuned for next week when we return to our regularly scheduled programming, already in progress. Strauss, Shostakovich, Mahler, and Bach.

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