I have finally begun to catch my breath after a great 3 weeks spent at the Bowdoin International Music Festival at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine. As a woodwind fellow I was there to perform chamber music in a woodwind quintet as well as in the orchestra and any solo performances I could squeeze in. After 21 days those performances totaled 11! I was able to perform 3 solo, 3 orchestra and 5 chamber.
To break those down a bit I began my performances with the Brahms Violin (really oboe!) Concerto. I was very excited to have the chance to play this amazing solo. My fellow winds were a great cushion allowing me to float above.
After that initial concert I got my chance at some solo work on the Bowdoin stage with Lyle Davidson’s Bird of Paradise and Poulenc’s Oboe Sonata.
Later that week it was the Lady Wind Squad’s turn at the stage. We decided early on that we wanted to prepare a children’s concert, so our first performance boasted some of that program, Berio’s Opus Number Zoo and Derek Bermel’s piece Wanderings. We had the great fortune to work directly with Bermel for this performance, which was a great added bonus. A few days later we performed our children’s concert adding Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf. Our “children” were a little older than we imagined, but it was still great fun!
My final week of performances kicked off with a chance to show Bowdoin my passion of bringing both of my gifts together in Rachmaninoff’s Vocalise. As is always fun when I perform this piece I witnessed the audience suddenly lean forward as I began to sing. It was completely unexpected for them and they loved it.
The last performance I will speak of was performing Mozart’s Eb minor Serenade with (almost) all of the winds. This was another community concert, this time at a Residential Community in town. It was a full house and my joy was in the audience members’ joy. I could feel the few that had a seat not even a foot from me hanging on every phrase. It was something very special that I will hold dear forever.
Outside of all this performing I met some great friends and had some time to explore a bit of Maine. It was of course a must to find lobster, and we certainly did at any opportunity. And we even had a chance to make it to the beach!
Most days our free time left us exploring the town of Brunswick. The restaurants were plentiful, which we made sure to try as many as possible, but there were a couple places that continued to be frequented. I can (but probably shouldn’t) boast that as many concerts I played I probably visited Gelato Fiasco more. One week is was a destination 5 days in a row. (Maybe more…) There were simply too many amazing flavors to try and experience! There was also Joshua’s, which had free popcorn and was a great hangout after a long day to catch up and talk of the upcoming days.
The three weeks will certainly be ones to remember. I learned so much about my ability as a musician as well as met friends and colleagues that will be around for life. From here it is only up!
My next adventure this summer: IDRS – New York!
August 5-9, 2014
– another SoprAboist