Wednesday, 25 February 2015

What it's like: 25 things about Being in an Orchestra.



There's nothing like it. There's excitement, adrenaline, hope, magical moments, connections you make with the audience as one. Then there's hours of rehearsals, frustrating musical phrases you just can't get right and technical excercises you wish you were better at. To say I have loved every part of being in an orchestra would be a lie. The bits when you are asked to play on your own, as a section or desk by desk are enough to stress you out and cause your hairs to turn grey. However, as soon as you walk onto the stage and sit down with wonderful and talented friends you do become as one. One body conveying a musical message that graces the ears of the audience and then all of the rehearsing suddenly becomes completely worth it. I have met the most musical, intelligent and kind people through participating in Orchestras and when you have being in an orchestra in common with someone you can relate to so many of the same things. Here's 25 things you'll be able to relate to with someone else who has played in an orchestra.


1) Practice is optional and you can sometimes get away with not practicing at all, it just depends on your technique and how well you can sight-read. 

2) You either have extreme hatred or love for the conductor.

3) You've both experienced hard pieces of music to play as an orchestra.

4) Your inability to count makes you rethink why you ever picked up an instrument in the first place.

5) The pain you both feel when you accidentally play in a rest.

6) Being part of a section that is either way too quiet or that just can't play at all.

7) Being part of the reason why you're in one of those sections.

8) Appreciation for classical music and other musicians technique.

9) Hidden rivalry that you've had with at least 2 or more other people in your section.

10) Utmost respect for the leader/front desk of the violins.

11) Forgetting key signatures.

12) Forgetting key changes.

13) Forgetting simple rhythms.

14) Forgetting a pencil.

15) Forgetting the music. 

16) Forgetting the music on the day of the concert.

17) Forgetting and never knowing the concert dates until a few days before it happens.

18) Not bringing enough money for snacks during intervals and those awkward in-between breaks between rehearsal and show-time.

19) Forgetting your instrument.

20) Not being bothered to carry it everywhere.

21) Being very concious of your bow going in the opposite direction of everyone else and not being able to change it fast enough.

22) Getting distracted by the ceiling of a venue and missing your cue.

23) The laughter music (and other people's mistakes) often brings to the orchestra.

24) Getting told you all did it perfectly by someone, ANYONE makes it completely worthwhile.

25) The happiness you feel when you all stand up with eachother at the end of the show and take a bow. And another bow. Sit down. Possibly stand up again. Bow. Awkwardly clap with your instrument in your hands. Sit down. Suffer in awkward 30 second silence and then begin to pack up.

There must be more but that's all my little brain can muster up right now. Comment below if you're in an orchestra, I would love to know whether you agree with me!

God bless,
All my love,

Rosalind xoxo