Monthly Archives: March 2015


If there’s something about my passion for playing that is prone to waning then I have yet to notice.  Quite the opposite, in fact – I’m finding myself developing more passion for the violin the longer I’m engaged with it.  Yesterday I practiced for probably two hours, and spent much of the day listening to […]


The final piece in Suzuki Book 2 is a minuet by Luigi Boccherini.  The piece is exceptionally well-known – somehow I’ve had it coursing through my brain since childhood.  I’ve hummed it for many years in the shower, on the bike, while running, doing dishes, and folding laundry.  When I learned it was going to […]

The Handel and Haydn Society

The Handel and Haydn Society celebrated its 200th anniversary yesterday.  The Boston organization was established March 24, 1815 to allow its members to get together to sing the works of the two great composers.  That’s it – I love the singular purpose for which this group came together.  They were amateur musicians, and no formal […]

Suzuki Kid

One of our kids at the school, about 8 years old, was testing for karate rank advancement this past Saturday – some levels of advancement are bigger than others, and he achieved green belt, the level at which we start to teach them sparring.  I was chatting with his mom as we walked to the desk […]

The New D

Tone is a funny thing – of course at this stage of my playing I chalk every deficit in my tone production up to my level of experience.  I’m a beginner on this instrument, and the pursuit of beautiful tone is something violinists struggle with forever.  But overall I’ve been relatively pleased with my progress, […]

A D String and a Minuet

My D String was revealing some wear near the bridge – metal string cores are wound with another layer of metal thread, and the outer layer was starting to fray.  I asked Teacher last week if I should pre-emptively replace it and she gave an emphatic “Yes.”  Apparently they can break and snap up toward […]

Irish Fiddles and The Art Institute

  The Art Institute’s big special exhibit opening today – St. Patrick’s Day – is called, Ireland: Crossroads of Art and Design, 1690-1840.  There was a member preview yesterday, so I went with a friend to see what they’ve come up with.  Ireland is a brand new exhibit curated by the Art Institute; I’m not […]

The Soviets

Growing up we had a monolithic evil force in the world – I’m part of the tail end of the generation that considered the USSR and its brand of communism to be existential threats to not only the USA, but to basic human decency.  And that’s the way it was cast – an epic battle […]

Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting

For years now I’ve sparred on Saturdays – we have long had a senior sparring class on the schedule in a late afternoon timeframe, finishing up around 4 pm.  I don’t get out there every week – Saturdays are big days at our school and sometimes my workload prevents it, but I try.   Sparring is […]

Many Roads Lead to Music

“I want to be better at improvisation, you know, just go to a jam session, have someone play a melody, and then improvise my solo part around them.” Last night a friend who plays the guitar and I were talking about our playing, what we like, and how we are accomplishing it.  She plays the […]