Author Archives: Ryan Libel

Keeping the Bow in Good Rehair

I played yesterday for the first time since last Monday.  Two reasons – 1) I was out of town for a karate tournament weekend in New York, and, most significantly, 2) when I went to practice last Monday I turned the screw on my bow as far as it would go and the hair was […]

Practice Small

Vivaldi remains my challenge; I confessed to Teacher last week that I feel a bit bogged down.  My complaint is that I haven’t been making as much progress on the piece as I think I should.  I’ve been playing it for months, and the things that were originally challenging feel only more so as time […]

Alexandra Switala at the Cultural Center

A week ago tomorrow was the latest free concert put on by the Musicians Club of Women at the Chicago Cultural Center.  The Club featured violinist Alexandra Switala, with collaborative piano by Inah Chiu.  The fact that Switala plays my instrument and the repertoire she chose made hers my favorite of the concerts in this […]

Mutter, Tchaikovsky, and Muti

When last I saw Anne-Sophie Mutter at Symphony Center, it was with her Virtuosi – they premiered a work by Sebastian Currier and treated the audience to a brilliant interpretation of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons.  Last night’s concert at Symphony Center also featured the great German violinist – this time as part of The Chicago Symphony […]

Triumph: Schumann 2

Robert Schumann wrote four symphonies; until Saturday night I’d listened to none of them.  Since I have tickets for a performance of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in less than three weeks that includes the second of the four, I’ve started doing my homework – Saturday night I listened to a performance by the great Vienna […]

Nyberg on Piano

This past Monday, August 28, was the fourth Monday of the month, the day the Musician’s Club of Women hosts its monthly concert in the Cultural Center’s magnificent Preston Bradley Hall.  This August concert featured Esther Nyberg at the piano.  Amongst many other accolades, Nyberg is the recipient of the Musician’s Club of Women Farwell […]

Clock Work

The Vivaldi concerto in A Minor has a lot of As – on multiple occasions I shift up to third position and play A on the E string with the first finger.  The move is really the tagline of the piece – open E string followed by a series of bold, ringing As.  Teacher wants […]