I think a proper autumn might finally have arrived. While I made it out for a rather blustery run at 6:45am and our walk also went ahead at 7:42pm, most of the time in between was very wet and windy. Ah well, I have a good stock of tea and plenty to do!

I feel like I’m getting through more in my practice sessions these days, partly because both scales and Moyse exercises are both happening a lot faster than a month ago. It also helps that I’m almost there with memorising the Reichert exercises – even if they’re not perfect, gone at least are the days of spending 15min trying to work out what on earth is going on in Bb minor.

My plan with the augmented and diminished arpeggios was somewhat successful, in that I think playing them at the beginning of my scales session helped with focus. There aren’t any good exercises for them in Complete Daily Exercises, though I remembered later in the day that there are a few in Exercises Journaliers which I’ll try. I ended up playing cascades of augmented arpeggios for a little while, which is easier ascending than descending.

The painful part of the day was most certainly studies and my articulation battles as a result. I am making progress, but slowly. Altes No. 2 is now up to speed, and the outer sections of No. 3 are fine, but there is a rather nasty B section in that one with lots of leaps. The Moyse studies I’ve been working on are like the Altes ones in miniature – No. 9 is an excellent exercise in making a slur a decrescendo but not cutting off the note. As for the dreaded Andersen No. 4, it is certainly better than last week in that I am playing shorter staccatos. However, I think my overall dynamic plan has suffered as a result, and I’m still not good at maintaining the super-short staccato for extended periods of time. My ideal for tomorrow would be being told that I can move on from the study for now, but need to return to it in a month or so when I’ve had the chance for the articulation exercises to sink in a little more.

Finally, various listening projects today have unearthed two very inspiring (though very different recordings). The first, as part of my flute CD listening, was a recording of William Bennett speaking on BBC radio about the history of the French Flute school and his experiences in Paris. It was fascinating to hear his thoughts on different players, and Fernand Dufrene’s recording of the Jolivet Concerto included in the broadcast was superb.

Then I’ve been doing a little searching for flute and bass trombone repertoire for a potential concert in Australia next year. It’s a tricky one, but I found this piece by Gyorgy Kurtag for piccolo, trombone and guitar. I always find Kurtag’s music fascinating, and have had this video on repeat while writing today’s post!

 

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