A Ridiculous Problem

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Last summer I had this awesome idea: I could take some music classes at a local community college. There was this class, Exploring Music, which is a sort of pre-theory class, that sounded perfect for me. So, at the last minute, I signed up. It was all about the fundamentals: rhythm and time signatures, scales, intervals, the circle of fifths, and chords. All of it was very in depth and I learned a great deal, much more than I was expecting to. I had been hoping that many of the really basic theory questions I had would be answered, so that I would no longer need to “waste” time asking those questions to my teacher. Now, when she starts talking theory as it relates to my current pieces, we no longer need to backtrack. Plus, I feel I’m able to ask much more intelligent and relevant questions.

Since I did well in that class and really enjoyed it, I signed up for the first class in the 4 semester Music Theory series. Today was the first day and I liked the teacher, who had been recommended to me by someone in my class from last semester. She teaches all four semesters and I hope to have her for all of them (assuming I do okay in this one!)

So what’s the problem? I haven’t told my teacher about any of this.

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7 responses »

  1. I haven’t told my teacher about a lot of stuff! I love reading round the subject and although I dont have the time for formal classes, I do spend a fair amount of time (usually over lunch) reading theory or history or finding other sources to keep me inspired.

    So, tell me again, what’s the problem ? 🙂

  2. oh, surely there’s no problem here! It’s not like your teacher could offer you a comparable experience. Even if you fear that you are spurning her when she could impart this knowledge to you, you’re getting something very different — going to a class is a whole other activity in your week, you get to meet and mingle with other people, experience different perspectives, enter the musical world from a non-exclusively-cello-y point of view and experience a collective, institutional part of it. No problem in sight, from this window in the blogosphere 🙂

  3. Again, I am surprised at people’s opinions. My hubby seems to think it is terrible that I have not communicated this to her. Granted, I have an issue with lack of telling people relevant information in general. I didn’t even tell my mother that I was playing cello until about 4 months in. My mother didn’t find out until John told her. It’s not like I withhold information that people REALLY need to know, but I just tend not to share things about myself and my life with others unless I have to.

    That being said, I guess what I envision is myself continuing on my same course, ending up halfway through getting an AA at the community college, and still not having communicated any of this to her. Or something like that, where it’s gone on a long time and gets to a point where it’s truly absurd I haven’t talked with her about it.

    Or maybe I’m just over thinking all this because I’ve spent most of my life not telling people things and having them get mad at me.

  4. I guess I meant as much that it’s not a problem to tell her, as it’s not a problem not to tell her! Or, rather than thinking through to the “absurd” endpoint of you getting a degree or a place at Juilliard without her ever knowing 🙂 or chalking it up to a habit not to tell people stuff, why not think about why it is you’re reluctant to tell her? And then you’d have a reason to easily overturn! I’m sure she wouldn’t object to you seeking that kind of other instruction, and would be delighted at your enthusiasm. Or, if maybe (I may be way off beam here) you feel a bit embarrassed for her to see you taking it so seriously, then I wouldn’t worry about that either — my sense is that people rarely fret about others as much as we fear they might when we feel that kind of embarrassment at being seen by them!

    p.s. I really miss my cello! It’s at the luthier being primped, hopefully to return sounding all the better.

  5. I’m sorry you are without cello! What happened?

    I have a habit of telling no one about cello-y related things because I’ve had an odd number of people be ridiculously mean to me about it. It’s one of those things where the things that you fear people will say, but no one ever really says, actually get said to me. It’s happened from the very beginning, with the guy at the shop who was supposed to be helping me. So I guess that’s why.

  6. Ah, Elysia, I am sorry — that’s rotten — but don’t let it get you down — you’re the bolder, braver one for venturing into this territory! No snide remarks can dent that! But I’m sure your teacher must be more of a friendly ally than the shop dude, so don’t let it stop you sharing things where there might be a warmer reception and a meaningful connection! 🙂

    Fortunately nothing untoward happened to my cello — I just decided to splurge on a new bridge and a new set of strings to replace the cheap-o ones it came with…they’ve served me well for 18 months, but I thought a little improvement in the sound quality could be a real boost just now. So I’m excited to hear what it’ll sound like…but walking home this evening I was sad there was no Vivaldi to practice awaiting me…

  7. 18 months?? Wow. My first set (new) lasted 6 and then the A broke, the D sounded just like the A did before it broke, and I hated the G and C, so I replaced them all. I did all the changing myself, and have been happy with the new ones, which are at about 6 mo. also, but still sound just as good as when I got them. I had my luthier replace the parchment under the A string on the bridge and add parchment under the D, which helped with sound quality for me. I hope yours sounds fab and you have fun with your Vivaldi when you get her back!

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