Tuesday, September 28, 2010

A Perfect Example

Recently I was handed a song to play at a Cabaret rehearsal - a stack of single-sided copies. I spent most of the song grappling to relocate pages from a horizontal location to a vertical one with one hand, while keeping tonality and time with the other. Here was the end result: 

This is what happens when single-sided sheet music is given to pianists. The Moral: hole-punching is good.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

What are You Doing Next Summer?

You need to start thinking about this now. Fill out online applications, scribble the paperwork, burn the CDs and bug people for letters of recommendation.

To get you started, consider these collaborative piano opportunities:


Aspen -
Collaborative Artist Program
Banff Centre - Collaborative Piano Internship
Chamber Music Northwest Young Artist Fellowship
Eastern Music Festival hires collaborative pianists for instrumental accompaniment, must be 21 to apply
Interlochen Summer Arts Camp hires 4-5 Instrumental accompanists
Kneisel Hall Chamber Music School and Festival
Meadowmount hires string accompanists - send resume & repertoire list (violin-viola-cello only) to gagnona@uncsa.com
Music Academy of the West - Instrumental Fellowship
Norfolk Chamber Music Session Fellowships
Summer Chamber Music Festival is a four-week chamber music program for string players and pianists aged 18-26
Tanglewood - Instrumental Pianist Fellowships
Texas Music Festival Fellowships
University of Nebraska-Lincoln - Chamber Music Institute Fellowships

Arbor Opera Theater hires three accompanists 
Ash-lawn Opera Festival hires one or two accompanists every summer
Atlantic Music Festival Fellowship Program (I think this is an opera gig . . . )
The College Light Opera Company hires two rehearsal accompanists every summer
Green Mountain Opera Festival - Apprentice pianist
Intermezzo has a 'Festival Orchestra Program'
IPAI Collaborative Fellows/Apprentices in Musical Theatre and Opera 
Music Academy of the West - Vocal Fellowship
New York Opera Studio Intensive - six pianists accepted, $500 for expenses (room, board)
Opera in the Ozarks hires one or two rehearsal accompanists every summer
Opera New Jersey - coach/accompanist apprentice
Opera North - hires pianists
Opera on the Avalon - art song and opera
OperaWorks Summer Intensive Program for coaches
Palm Beach Opera YAP - pianist/coach
Tanglewood - Vocal Pianist Fellowships

Vocal - Art Song:
Asolo Song Festival & Institute for Song Interpretation (Italy)
Franz-Schubert-Institute - summer course for singers and pianists

Musical Theatre:
Bowling Green State U Huron Playhouse
Intermezzo has a 'Festival Orchestra Program'
Interlochen Summer Arts Camp hires 4-5 Musical Theatre pianists
Kalamazoo Civic Theatre hires pianists
Music Theatre Bavaria has Collaborative Piano Internships
Rocky Mountain Repertoire Theatre hires pianists
Surflight Theatre - Musical and Music Directing Internships
SRJC Summer Repertory Theatre - This may be more pay-to-play, but they do use rehearsal/performance pianists
Summer Stars Asst. MD Internships
West Virginia Public Theatre occasionally hires summer rehearsal pianists

Interlochen Summer Arts Camp hires 4-5 Choral pianists

Interlochen Summer Arts Camp hires 4-5 dance pianists each summer

Valleyfair Amusement Park hires pianists for summer shows - the rep is R&B, rock and kid stuff (in other words, easy $$)

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Paranoid - or prepared?

Before leaving the apartment last Saturday, I stared at two items: an adjustable piano bench and a music stand. I debated the likelihood of using either [essential] items at my upcoming wedding gig, and ended up being partially lazy: I dragged the metal stand out to the car and left the bench. This partial foresight and the fact I was 30 minutes early was what saved me.

Upon arrival I was led to a keyboard and a keyboard stand [with a sustain pedal, as per my request]. There was NO visible music stand, though, and I was met with blank faces when I asked for one. Fortunately, the spare stand in my car made it so I didn't have to resort to reading-music-in-one's-lap or music-folder-held-by-stranger survival methods. The very low chair/bench created some challenges - and caused me to mentally curse my laziness* - but I made it work.

. . . on another day . . .

I played for a funeral. Unexpectedly, I was required to provide about 15 extra minutes of background music. Due to pure luck, I had included extra music in my folder. This meant I did not have to resort to poorly disguised Christmas carols or Disney tunes** in order to avoid repeated repertoire.

. . . then another time . . .

I had to play for three hour rehearsals, and with a [hard] wooden piano bench that was too low. Just in case, I had brought an adjustable, padded bench in my car - which saved my back AND my butt.

The moral: strive to have too much music and a car stuffed with extra stands and music benches -- plus at least one extra metronome (just because).

*On the other hand, parking was located two blocks away from the site. And it was hot. I was cranky enough discovering the lack of stand & trekking the subsequent round-the-block trip. A third lap would not have been the best idea.

**Am mostly kidding - I have other repertoire in my head and in my fingers. However, its amazing what tunes jump to mind when you are scrambling for an appropriate melody to fill the silence.