Rehearsing for a String Quartet Concert
On Tuesday, the string quartet rehearsed for a concert we’ll be playing this Saturday in Cranfield, entitled ‘Music For a Summer’s Evening’. This is a repeat of a programme we performed last month in Ivinghoe, but as the personnel in the quartet are different for this concert, it necessitated another rehearsal.
The first challenge was to co-ordinate the diaries of four busy professional musicians who come from geographically diverse areas! When this hurdle had been overcome, we got down to the happy business of playing through the programme. Lest I spoil the surprise for any potential audience member, I’ll just say that the range of music on offer will be very diverse and cover many styles of music, keeping the whole thing varied (and at times unexpected)!
All in all, the whole programme was covered in just over three hours of rehearsal (which was accompanied by a carpenter working on the decking of the cellist’s back patio – it being the only day he could do the job!). I have to say that I’m often amazed at how quickly these rehearsals come together, as the level of sight reading amongst the group means that the first play through often sounds like the finished product. Generally, the feel of the piece, or specific time changes or bowing issues are discussed and then it’s on to the next piece. No agonizing over little details or the slow, agonising playing of individual passages over and over again. It means that the end product can be spontaneous and joyful, and it’s this joy in playing music that is not overly familiar that contributes to a feeling of freshness and commitment in performance.