Sunday, October 09, 2005

Flute Road Show in the Collins Studio!

We're in for a treat -- Jeff Smith of the J.L. Smith Flute Company will be in town this month and will show flutes in my studio.

Friday, Oct 28, 4-8 pm.

I urge any of you who are in the market to come try out flutes. Even if you don't have plans to buy a flute this month (or even this year), this is a really good opportunity to become more informed about how to buy a flute. Even if you've been playing for less than a year, try to stop by. For starters, you'll get more familiar with the good brands, the options available in the step-up and pro flute ranges, and you'll get an idea of prices so that you can budget accordingly for several years down the road.

Why do I host road shows?

  • Jeff is a no-pressure, no-haggling kind of guy, so it's fun to try out flutes with him.

  • There are some great flute sellers in Seattle (folks I happily recommend), but there is no ONE store that has so many varieties of flutes to try at one time.

  • The only other time of year to try out so many varieties of flutes all at once will be at the SFS Flute Festival this spring.

  • I'll be around all afternoon to hear you try instruments and to give you my opinion. I do not take a commission; my job is to be your "personal shopper" and help you make an informed decision. (For some students, that decision is "wait another year," by the way!)

    Please RSVP if you plan to attend.
    I want to make sure that not everyone shows up at once!

    Trevor Wye concert in Seattle!

    Click on the photo for more info.

    Also visit the Seattle Flute Society website for Trevor's bio and a list of recital repertoire.

    Music Theory Geek Joke

    This is a scream. (And once you've all finished the music theory CD ROM, I bet you'll get it, too!)

    A C, and Eb, and a G go into a bar. The bartender says, "Sorry, but we don't serve minors."

    So the Eb leaves and the C and the G have an open fifth between them. After a few drinks, the fifth is diminished and the G is out flat. An F comes in and tries to augment the situation, but is not sharp enough.

    A D comes into the bar and heads for the bathroom, saying, "Excuse me. I'll just be a second." Then an A comes into the bar, but the bartender is not convinced that this relative of C is not a minor. Then the bartender notices a Bb hiding at the end of the bar and exclaims, "Get out now. You're the seventh minor I've found in this bar tonight."

    The Eb, not easily deflated, comes back to the bar the next night in a 3 piece suit with nicely shined shoes. The bartender (who used to have a nice corporate job) says, "You're looking sharp tonight - Come on in. This could be a major development." This proves to be the case, as the Eb takes off his suit, and everything else, and is au natural.

    Eventually the C sobers up and realizes in horror that he's under a rest. The C is brought to trial, found guilty of contributing to the diminution of a minor, and is sentenced to 10 years of DS without Coda at an upscale correctional facility. On appeal, however, the C is found innocent of any wrongdoing, even accidental, and that all contrary motions are bassless.

    17 proven methods for ruining your child's music education

    Luckily none of us have never done any of these things, right?

    17 proven methods for ruining your child's music education

    From a 1950s magazine (source unknown)

    1. Always call him for practice when the ball game is going best; call in a loud, demanding voice so his friends will feel sorry for him.

    2. Insist he practice the most uninteresting music the longest. “You can’t learn much by playing tunes.”

    3. Stop him if he plays anything for fun or any music other than his lesson. “Music is serious.”

    4. Never help him with his practicing. “I just don’t have the time.”

    5. Add another hour of practice when he has been naughty, or when he does not mind you. “That will teach him!”

    6. Call loudly from kitchen or basement each time he makes a mistake. Add a punch line, such as, “If you can’t do better than that, give it up.”

    7. Insist he never practice when (a) father is home, (b) baby is taking a nap, (c) Susie is looking at TV, or (d) mother is tired.

    8. Pay no attention to his music making. “I don’t care whether he practices or not. It is entirely up to him.”

    9. Don’t let him play for his friends or anyone else until he can really play. “After two or three years he’ll be able to surprise them.”

    10. Take him unawares the first time you want him to play for someone and ask him in front of everybody to play “something.” If he refuses, insist that he play; if he still refuses, announce that he’s through with music.

    11. Apologize for his poor performance when he does play for others.

    12. Never compliment him on his playing. He may get an inflated ego.

    13. Keep him away from concerts and recitals until he’s old enough, and don’t take him unless he can play well enough to “appreciate” it.

    14. Use an old wreck of an instrument instead of buying a new one. “No sense wasting money until he plays real well.”

    15. Don’t tune the piano. “He needs to learn to finger the keys; it doesn’t matter how it sounds.”

    16. Threaten, periodically, to stop his lessons unless: (a) he plays better than so-and-so, (b) he makes better grades in school, (c) he makes his bed each morning, (d) he treats his parents with more respect.

    17. Lay down the law forcefully, just as your parents did with you (even though you quit playing at the first opportunity).


    I've created this blog as a place to quickly post comments about the studio, and about teaching, playing, and practicing...Stop by from time to time to see what's new!

    Updated Autumn 2007: After a long break, I've decided to update this blog again. It's much easier to post info here than on the DSU Music Department website or on my own website. I'll save for my more "formal" stuff (my CV, studio policies, etc.) and will use the blog as a photo gallery or for practice tips.

    Saturday, October 08, 2005

    Getting a great first sound on the flute

    I had a great time last week over at View Ridge Elementary working with the beginning flutists. What a great music program that school has! They even have a full-time music teacher who is excellent. All Seattle schools should be so fortunate.

    The band director, Mr. Ken Pendergrass, wrote about my class on his blog. Neat!