Unplugged – IMPACT
I’ve done so many music intensive programmes over the past 4 months of school than I probably have EVER done in my whole life, but those hours of practicing pieces and ridiculous, last-minute changes aren’t going to stop me.
This year for Unplugged, I was asked to do a piece with a classmate of mine to accompany her singing, along with a cellist . That wasn’t new to me – after CultuRama I figured how the piano was no longer a solo instrument but rather an instrument that adds depth and harmony to pieces. This year, there was a twist: I was encouraged to play the cello to accompany another piece. It wasn’t particularly difficult to play in theory – I had to play the bass notes of the chordal accompaniment, which was (for this piece, anyway) the same three recurring notes (for you non-music folks). I wasn’t too unfamiliar with the cello. I learned the violin for a little bit 5 years ago, but the last time I touched a violin was in 2014, which meant that I was super out of touch with that branch of string instruments, to say the least. I practiced like crazy, tuned a very, very sad cello, taught myself the chords, cut my fingers, nearly broke the tuner trying to tune it, and pulled out a billion bow hairs from the world’s saddest bow. I decided to take it up anyway, and if it didn’t work out quite as planned, I could still take the cello up after Unplugged, or tick it off my list of instruments that I’ve tried (which, by the way, is only about 4). I got lots of help from fellow students and teachers on pointers to help me play the cello better – I only had 10 days to figure out how it worked and how to play it well, which felt near impossible. I tried anyway.
I’ve practiced many times with our little trio and the improvement is massive – we’ve fixed intonation, dynamics, and the overall interpretation of the piece. We connect really well and I feel like we have all made this piece really powerful and of course, impactful. Hopefully the audience feel the powerful energy as much as we do tomorrow. I can’t wait to perform it!