Sujin C. ’21 - Flute
Concertino for Flute and Piano, Op. 107 by Cécile Chaminade
I was drawn to Concertino for Flute and Piano, Op. 107 by Cécile Chaminade at first because I remember playing the first part of this piece when I was in elementary school. My flute teacher, Ms. McClusky, first introduced me to this piece. When I first heard the piece, I was weirdly familiar with it and that was when I realized that this was my childhood piece. Because it gave my nostalgia and joy, I confidently decided to pick this piece for my May performance. The main challenge of this piece was that it has a lot of difficult rhythms and notes. But, despite its difficulty, this piece is full of fun rhythms that make the piece more lively. I especially paid more attention to dynamics also to express the beauty of the piece.
One of my successes to my musical studies during this unusual time was that I was able to complete the piece by myself. Although some challenges, such as making time and motivation for practice followed, I was able to make progress and proudly grow as a musician. I was able to learn more independently by managing my own time and listening to the piece multiple times to perfect the piece with details.
Lastly, I think what surprised me artistically this year was my ability to fix my mistakes by practicing the measures repeatedly. When I first saw the piece, I had doubt in myself of being able to complete this piece. However, I was capable of overcoming this uncertainty and this experience gave me more confidence in my skills as a flutist. I look forward to performing my last piece of my junior year at Emma.
Constance L. ’21 - Cello
Kol Nidre by Max Bruch
I have been working on Pezzo Capriccioso, Opus 62 by Tchaikovsky and Kol Nidre by Max Bruch. I really like the expressive element in both pieces, and I learned a lot more advanced techniques from these works. I am able to showcase my strengths (i.e. vibratos) and also work on my thumb positions.
Pezzo Capriccioso has a somber tone, which is heard through the minor key and slow tempo. This piece was written when Tchaikovsky's friends were dying, which speaks for itself throughout the piece.
As a junior, I found it challenging to practice my instrument daily due to an increase of school work. However, whenever I have time to practice, I try my best to make the most out of each session and approach my pieces systematically.
I developed a systematic approach to my pieces—creating a practice chart, so that I do not repeat practicing the sections I have already mastered well.
I used to have weak thumb positions, especially when playing notes in the upper positions (higher notes) of the cello, and I resisted choosing pieces with too many thumb positions. Nevertheless, as my teacher, Ms. Pickhardt, and I worked to strengthen these skills, I feel much more comfortable playing in the upper positions.
I look forward to sharing my music on the Emma Artists online platform.
Songman Felicity L. ’20 - Composer/Mezzo Soprano
"Chasing the Meteors"
I am presenting my production of an original instrumental piece, "Chasing the Meteors."
It is a piece to honor senior year. The piece starts in a slow major key, the harmony transitioning between IV major and I major, illustrating peaceful, prolonged anticipation. The tone then shifts to minor, and the rhythm picks up with drum grooves in the background, representing the accelerating sense of time as spring draws near. The piece culminates in some staccato and a descending melody, representing the sudden break to a normal senior spring, and my flow of emotion:((
This year, one growth in my musical studies is the increased spontaneity in expression. I became more at ease with embracing the story and emotion behind each piece. The transition between chest and head voice has been a big challenge for me as a singer. Singing musical theatres and practicing vocal exercises that target the middle range has thus been very helpful to my growth as a singer.
For the vocal aspect of my musical studies, singing "The Singer" has brought me so much joy this year. The piece tells a story about a singer who finds simple contentment in music, a story I love to perform. The rhythmic challenges and the fun melodies makes the piece very engaging to learn.
Leave a Note of Encouragement!