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Studio Notes by Rebecca Lo

November 5, 2013

Zodiac trio by William Mathias—Yvonne Smith and her chamber group, Aaron Perdue (flute) and Emily Klein (harp)

Mr. Dunham thought that Emily could use more nails on the harp to make it sound “weirder” in the beginning. Also, the harmonies could be a bit louder before the viola solo comes in. Mr. Dunham also thought the accents in the viola part could be more evident and more leaned on.

Morpheus by Rebecca Clarke—Yvonne

Aaron Conitz pointed out that when Yvonne tried to express more in the lower half of the bow that she raised her shoulder, which would create tension.

Mr. Dunham thought Yvonne could include the audience a bit more in her performance. She could start the music more intimately, bring the audience to her toward the middle of the piece, and end with the intimacy again.

November 12, 2013

Suite by Bloch, Movement II—Ashley Pelton

Blake Turner thought that Ashley had really good energy, but the soft places can have more depths. Rachel Li suggested that Ashley could play and flow more with the harmonies, and Dan Wang felt that Ashley could dig in more on the C string.

Viola Sonata by Rochberg, Movements II and III— Aaron Conitz

Blake loved the conviction with which Aaron played. However, the start of the third movement could have more power; it didn’t sound like it was exactly set.

Mr. Dunham thought it was very nice and had a lot of colors, though Aaron could have less vibrato on the lean sounds. In measure 25-40, it could have a very big gesture on the climax. The last three pizzicatos could take more time. Start the movement with a shimmery and deep sound.

Viola Sonata, op. 25, no. 1 by Hindemith, Movements I and II—Teddy Schenkman

Mr. Dunham, commented that Teddy had a strong and flexible sound.

Jarita Ng recommended that Teddy write “breathe” on the music to remind him to relax his hands. She also suggested that he could come down a bit more in the beginning so there is room to grow when it the piece reaches ff.

Ashley thought Teddy could play with different weights and lengths of the bow, because the sound is very similar now. Blake suggested that Teddy could think of the resonance to find the stroke, and Rachel felt that Teddy shouldn’t constrict the bow—he could have more resonance by using more bow.

Cello Suite No 4 by Bach, Allemande and Courante—Ashley Pelton

Most of the comments for Ashley related to tension and the body. Jarita noticed that Ashley twisted her hand when she played with the first two fingers and suggested to practice under tempo—being totally aware of her body and stopping right away when she felt tension to release it. Rachel suggested that Ashley be conscious that her thumb is not tight, while Dan realized that Ashley didn’t move her elbow. Aaron thought Ashley could have a more balanced left hand and could rotate the shoulder for movability. Blake suggested Ashley think of speed when releasing the left fingers.

Lastly, Rachel thought Ashley could think of the phrasing instead of the notes, because it sounded too “notey” and stressful—don’t emphasize everything and work too hard.

November 19, 2013

Cello Suite No 4 by Bach, Prelude and Allemande—Rebecca Lo

Like with Ashley’s performance the week before, Blake noted some tension issues in the left hand, indicating that the piece looked like it was difficult to the audience. He noted that though Rebecca’s feet are far apart, she should be sure to stand securely with proper posture.

Jarita thought the Prelude could have more direction and suggested thinking of the movement coming from the back and opening up the body and shoulders.

Dan thought the intonation was generally very good, but the diminished chords could be even more in tune.

Ashley thought the soft notes could have more core.


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