clarinet practicing teaching

Teaching may be my calling…

This week was the first week of official band camp for the kids I’m working with at a local high school in Virginia Beach. This is no joke for them, 10 hours a day Monday through Friday!! And they get to do it again next week.  I get exhausted just thinking about it. Anyway, most of the playing took place in the afternoons, so I didn’t have to be there the entire day!  Not that I could have, I still have my Navy job to do, which obviously has to take priority.  So I tried to be there as much as my schedule would allow.  Still, that made for very full days for me!  Something I haven’t experienced in a long time.  Wednesday was a 12 hour day for me…between Navy gigs, the high school, and teaching my own private lessons, I wasn’t done until after 8pm!  And I spent 2 hours of that 12 hours in the car going from place to place.  It took me almost an hour to get from the high school in VA Beach to one of my lessons in Portsmouth!  Ugh…good thing I’m passionate about this stuff.

And on the practicing front…I’m trying to get as much as I can in.  Right now, I’m focusing on scale exercises, more specifically the Didier scale book (which I have worked out of before, and mentioned it in my blog)  I basically got really sick of the daily routine that I have been doing everyday for about 3ish years.  So sick of it that I dreaded doing it.  So now I do long tones, articulation exercises, and a key out of the Didier, applying a ton of articulations to each study.  Its been working out pretty good for me I think.  I’m really focusing on relaxing my fingers and being focused.  Easier said than done!  I’m also trying to get in some wind ensemble practicing, and I’m trying to learn some new, hard marches.

Still waiting for that opening in the DC Navy Band…hahaha.

2 replies on “Teaching may be my calling…”

Hi Paul! The DC Navy band is considered a premiere band, which means all members who join the band are automatically promoted to E6. But in order for there to be an audition, there has to be a spot open (someone has to retire/separate). And then usually 50-100 people will apply for the one spot. I’ve been through their audition process twice already! Once in 2009, and again in 2011. It is very, very competitive. And now unfortunately, because of funding, the Navy has just cut billets from all the Navy bands, including DC, so they’re not replacing everyone who retires/separates from the band. So that means even less chance of an audition happening. They have opened up some auditions, but have restricted the applicants to E6 fleet MUs, which won’t cost the Navy much to transfer them over since they are already and E6. So in other words, its very difficult!

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