By the way, the building you see to the left is Regenstein...our lovely music building...and for me swiftly becoming a home away from home.
My Thursday mornings begin early with an 8:15 trumpet excerpt class. The four other guys in the class complain like crazy about having to play at such an ungodly hour, but it's ideal for an early bird like me. Every week we're assigned a piece to learn and the 5 of us switch parts from week to week in order to get exposure to a lot of rep we otherwise may not get a chance to play before starting a "real" gig.
This week we were tackling Strauss' Alpine Symphony. I had been assigned a week off of playing so I could better prepare to play principal on Mahler 5 next week (yikes!!!), but decided to go to class anyway just so I could hear how the parts work and pick up any helpful tidbits Charlie might have to offer. As it happened though, Kris (one of the other grad students) didn't show so Mr. Geyer promptly called me down to play his part (thankfully he'd been on 4th trumpet so it wasn't too difficult). The Alpine Symphony has some incredible trumpet parts and Ansel Norris (a freshman and already an amazing player--mark my words...you WILL hear about this guy someday!) was playing principal. Though I was sight reading and hadn't even listened to the piece in ages, I was in my ideal position at the bottom of the section and was having a blast!
I love the feeling of beefing up a section's sound when I play in tune, in time, and with a big fat tone. I'd much rather play this roll than that of section leader--not because I don't like playing solos, I really do, but rather because I find the skills and sound I posses make me ideal as a section player. I don't mean to sound cocky, but I'm really good at it--and that is fun!
After excerpt class I took a leisurely walk along the lake on my way to participate in a language research study. It is a BEAUTIFUL day today! The temp must be up around 70 degrees and with only a slight breeze it's just about as ideal as you can imagine (and totally out of character for Chicago this time of year).
The study was interesting. I was given a 15 minute training session on a new imaginary language. I was shown various images of animals and objects and heard the words for them pronounced. Cat="teeg" Cow="geef" etc. Each time, I was shown a regular sized thing, then a small version of that thing. Small cat="keeteeg" Small cow="keegeef" etc. I was then shown multiple numbers of each thing. Many cats="teegeel" Many SMALL cats= "keeteegeel" etc.
After the training session, I was shown a whole batch of new objects and was asked to intuit what the correct words for these things may be. For example, I was shown a fish and told it was called a "bess". I was then shown a small fish--or many fish--or many small fish--and given 2 choices as to which word would correctly describe what I saw. For example, when shown 3 small fish I was given a choice between 1) "besseel" or 2) "keebesseel". I was given no feedback after I answered and have NO idea how I scored on this test, but I got paid $10 for 1/2 hour of work...not bad:)
On my way back to the music building I noticed this kite stuck up in a tree and thought it was tragically beautiful...
Don't we all feel like this little guy every once in a while?