Dark evenings certainly make a difference, it’s 8:50pm and I already feel ready for bed! On the other hand, I did go for a lovely run this morning, so not all bad.

We went to Peri Court Farm as part of our shopping trip today, so I was able to get some dark chocolate-coated ginger as a reward for my practice. Yummy!

Practice itself went quite well, especially scales! After a few days of them sounding and feeling utterly shocking, today suddenly worked. Several possible reasons why:

– We switched back to Moyse finger exercises this week (and I only did them at crotchet = 96 today to iron out errors)

– I had lunch and a break between Moyse exercises and scales, which may have given the muscles a chance to recover

– I’ve been practising and it’s paying off!

I’ll have to see how things progress tomorrow, but hopefully this is a permanent improvement.

Yesterday Trevor added another set of exercises to our list, Daily Exercise No. 1 by Marquarre, which can be found on page 40 of Complete Daily Exercises. I had to sightread it solo in class yesterday and found it really hard! The first bar in the C major version is C – D# – E – G, and I could not get my fingers to follow the pattern. Trevor did confirm that this is exactly the point of the exercise – to make us play something unexpected and non-scalic – but I still need to do some work on it. I also spent a good solid 10 min on the Pinkie Polka today, and can now play it at crotchet = 63.

Our repertoire for this week is the Griffes Poem, and the orchestral excerpt the Menuet from Bizet’s L’Arlesienne Suite No.2. I haven’t played the Griffes before, and so have rather got my work cut out learning notes, but have found it to be a lovely piece. I’m quite keen to program it for something further down the track if I get the opportunity.

As for the Bizet, well it’s just such sparkling, stunning music, like having a warm hug without it being too overpowering. I’ve been listening to the Berlin Phil/Karajan recording on Youtube, which is bubbly and delightful. The flute solo starts at 5:22, but why not listen to the whole thing and feel inspired?

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