Monday, May 16, 2016

Passion Party #564 - Master Class

I have never had the guts to audition, to put myself in a highly competitive environment musically.  The only time I had to audition to get into graduate school in a jazz program, I hated it so much that I decided that continuing schooling was just not for me.  I never went back to a formal degree program after getting my Bachelor of Arts in Music Composition - I was just not a real academic, in the "ivory-tower" sense.  And this decision worked well for me.

My son Evan, on the other hand, is on a solid path to get a Masters in Cello Performance (Chamber Music) from San Francisco Conservatory of Music.  Right now he is in Los Angeles as one of 40 students from around the world that were chosen to participate in the Piatigorsky Cello Festival

We went to the cello festival this afternoon to see Evan play for a master class with Raphael Wallfisch
Evan was one of three students that played in this, the first master class of the week (each of the 40 students gets a chance to play for one of the master teachers.)  Evan was nervous, and understandably so.  He was not only playing for one of the most recorded cellists in the world, he was doing so in a concert hall FILLED with other cellists that were really outstanding, including three cellists that had played for the LA Philharmonic.
The first two students that played were really quite good, and Raphael was a great teacher - very precise, and humorous in a very British way. They were both nervous, and he worked on their bowing quite a bit.
Evan played the Debussy Sonata for cello and piano.  The pianist (who played for all three) was really phenomenal.  Raphael clearly knew the Debussy inside and out, and had very specific suggestions for Evan, mainly regarding interpretation and direction of the phrases, really detailed stuff.  He clearly enjoyed Evan's playing.  He let Evan play all three movements of the piece - the only student that he let complete their pieces.  And at the end he clearly said, (very softly), "Bravo" to Evan, when he finished the last dramatic ending of the sonata. 
We were so proud.  I almost started to cry.  It was a huge triumph for Evan.  Now he gets to just go to cello concerts, recitals and other master classes for the rest of the 10 days.
Tomorrow night we see him perform at Disney Hall as part of an 80-cello orchestra!

So I guess this falls into the old "Follow Your Dream" category.  Or perhaps "Follow Your Reality - find what you are good  at, and keep doing it".

Monday, May 9, 2016

Prince, Adele, Ed Sheeran and Herbie Hancock walk into a bar...

Not it's not a joke, it's some of the music you'll hear on Wednesday at the Catalina Jazz Club in Hollywood when the George Kahn "Secrets" Band takes the stage to play an eclectic night of Jazz;  Music starts at 8:30 PM,
Here's the program:
1)   Killer Joe
2)   Rumor Has It - Adele
3)   The Night Has 1000 Eyes
4)   Freedom Jazz Dance – Eddie HArris
5)   Roger Kilowatt - Kahn
6)   Can’t Feel My Face – The Weeknd
7)   Thinking Out Loud – Ed Sheeran
8)   Thieves In The Temple - Prince
9)   Wayne’s World - Kahn
10)                  Work Song – Nat Adderly
Wednesday, May 11 at 8:30 PM.  Please call for reservations, to make sure you get a great seat 323-466-2210 or buy online at CATALINAJAZZCLUB.COM