Chat thread! :D

Chatterbox: Down to Earth

Chat thread! :D

Chat thread! :D

submitted by Lupine@BB&Peregrine, age 14,she/her, Platform 9 and 3/4
(October 13, 2021 - 7:40 pm)

[As an explanation to anyone who is wondering what this thread is: Lupine, Blackfooted Bobcat and I discovered we had much in common and wanted to start a thread where we could chat with each other without taking over another thread.]

Hey Blackfooted Bobcat and Lupine!  It's funny how excited I am to have a chatting thread with you. I love talking about music and I've been a little deprived of it because of COVID.  I am also just looking forward to chatting to you about things in general!

The paragraphs below are directed to both of you in a way.

Lupine, you mentioned you are learning Bartok's Romanian Dances, which is a coincidence.  I'm polishing the exact same piece for a recital.  I was curious what you found the hardest part(s) in the piece and what you liked about it?  I really like how each movement is it's own unique character (I've been trying to figure out what book characters remind me of each movement) but at the same time they are part of a whole.  It challenges me musically to give each movement a really unique feel and sound.  I feel like I am talking with people I haven't known for long when I play it.  But I want to feel and sound like I really know them well.  It's a work in progress. 

Technically wise I have a hard time with the false harmonics (finger nail on a chalkboard sounds, anyone?) and making the last movement wild but clean and not a desperate rushing stampede.  My last movement is wild and messy and a bit desperate, especially when I reach the end.  Do you have any tips regarding keeping the wild feeling of the last movement but still playing clean; and any tips for clear false harmonics?  My teacher has a practice steps for the false harmonics (I can share them if either of you are interested), but I was curious if either of you had any other ways to practice them.

My teacher gave me Bach's Fugue in G Minor for solo violin, as well as several pages worth of notes on how to practice and play it.  My first lesson on it made me feel almost dizzy with how much you need to think about in each measure.  A part of me held a conviction that my brain would explode, but since many other violinists have played it and kept their head intact I dived in . . . And it is starting to make a little more sense -- sometimes.  Other times I have to break and work on a piece/part I know well so I can at least remind myself I know how to play the violin.

Blackfooted Bobcat, you said you were working on a Bach solo cello suite, do you ever feel like the above?


submitted by Peregrine
(October 14, 2021 - 10:48 am)

Sadly I haven't done the last movement yet, I've only gotten to 1, 3, and 4. My harmonics sound like a very angry tea kettle at the moment and I think they terrify my teacher during lessons xD My only tips (which I myself don't really follow) are to make sure your first finger is down solidly because sometimes I get mixed up about which finger is the harmonic one and which is the normal one and then it dies. Also make sure your bow is in a good place, not too close to the fingerboard or bridge.

What other songs have you guys played? Some of my favorites (most of my repertoire [that word sounds so fancy] consists of Suzuki songs) are the Vivaldi A minor movements, of which there are many, Humoresque, Polish Dance, and Elfentanz (I forgot their composers though).

I was "practicing" today but got distracted by my phone and just ended up watching violin videos for like an hour. xD 

submitted by Lupine , Platform 9 and 3/4
(October 16, 2021 - 9:50 pm)
submitted by Top!
(October 14, 2021 - 1:14 pm)

I'm excited for this too!

You guys are way ahead of me... I'm just on the first cello suite XD I might look into the second (which is probably my favorite) soon, but I'm a little busy with orchestra right now, don't know exactly how hard it is, and am working on violin a lot because I want to go more into violin. (I started on viola for school, but recently got a violin and am playing both but viola for orchestra.)

About that, I got put into the second-easiest orchestra at first (there's one for beginner-beginners and one for more advanced beginners). But then I did an audition and the person who I did it for moved me up. (She... um... really liked my interpretation. Sorry if this sounds like bragging, I didn't mean it to.) I'm four weeks behind everyone else XD But the music is harder and more fun. We're playing Dvorak's third Slavonic Dance, Haydn's symphony no 88, a song from How to Train your Dragon, and an Orchestral March that our conductor wrote.

Anyway, @Peregrine, the first cello suite is pretty simple. I love the Prelude, but it's kind of hard to make it sound musical. The other movements are easier. I especially love the Courante and Sarabande. The Sarabande is very fun to embellish. Since it's a slow movement, I try to make sure it still feels like there's a lot of space between the notes, kind of? But I've added a fair amount of faster notes between other notes. 

Also, @Lupine you said that you've been playing since you were five and @Peregrine you said for 10 years? That's so cool. You guys are so lucky :DDD I'm trying to make up for lost time.

submitted by Blackfooted Bobcat, age Yay!, Violist and books
(October 14, 2021 - 1:56 pm)

I have a name for anyone who wants an AE: Yoggi. 

submitted by Pancake, age No clue, River Lake
(October 14, 2021 - 3:43 pm)

Pancake, no worries about the posts!  The description is easy to miss.

Blackfooted Bobcat (Do you mind if I call you Bobcat?), that is so cool you were moved up.  It didn't come across to me as bragging to say she liked your interpretation.  That's great she did, and I am excited for you! 

I've played one of Dvorak's Slovonic Dances before.  It was really fun, even though all the talks of hepehedrons (?) -- or whatever the fancy word for three against two is -- confused me, I wasn't able to get my head around it.  One rehearsal our conductor kept calling it the Hungarian Dances.  It was amusing.  My friend next to me actually crossed out the title Slovonic Dances and wrote Hungarian Dances instead. You know the times in rehearsal when you are trying to keep a strait face and play?  Thank goodness I play violin, at least I can smile, it is hard enough to not laugh sometimes without playing a wind instrument.

I'm impressed you embelish Bach's solo works.  I have no idea where to start so I just play what it written.  I could definitely see where trying to embellish a slow movement so it is unique but still has the feeling of a slow movement and not a rushing mass of notes could be difficult.  I think embellishing any piece to make it yours but still stay true to the composer's original composition would be a fine line to walk.  I wish I could hear you play as I am really curious about your interpretation!

I actually realized I've been playing for about 12 years now.  I shocked myself when I did the math.  How long have you been playing?  From what I have heard about all the work you have been doing you will soon be caught up with all the players who started when they were small.

Lupine, those are definitely good tips.  I have gotten my harmonic finger mixed up with my other finger before.  Your discription of angry tea kettle harmonics made me laugh.  I think we sound similar.

I have been playing a lot of solo Bach lately.  I think my teacher is determined that I finish the first Sonata.  I hope afterwards I can learn a concerto.  Maybe Bruch's violin concerto.

I think my favorite pieces that I have played at this time (it changes) are Handel's Larghetto from Sonata in D major, Humoresque, Meditation from Thais, and the Bach Double/Bach's Concerto for Two Violins in D Minor.

To both of you: other than violin what are some of your hobbies?


submitted by Peregrine
(October 17, 2021 - 11:39 am)

Humoresque is good! My favorite things to do are (unsurprisingly I'm sure) reading, drawing, writng, listening to music (I don't actually listen to classical music too often. I like playing it but a lot of it is kind of boring to listen to) and *slightly embarrassed* playing with dolls (yes I'm 14 go away)

submitted by Lupine , The Entrance Hall
(October 19, 2021 - 6:46 pm)

*Gaaaaaaaaaasp* I love dolls (and stuffies) too!!!!! I also like making things for them. Like, for Hinamatsuri (a Japanese holdiay where you put out a doll display, among other things) I made them some pretend mochi where it's pink, white, and green on top of each other. (I also made mochi you can eat, but that's not as relevant.) Do you ever make things for them? And what kinds of music do you like listening to?

submitted by Blackfooted Bobcat
(October 20, 2021 - 10:28 am)

Ooh, a hinamatsuri is a great idea! I have one Japanese porcelain doll that my grandma gave me, and a lot of kokeshi dolls. Once I set up a marketplace for them. Also I have a ton of tiny books so I made a little mini library :/ 

I like listening to indie music, Celtic music, LotR music, and Hawaiian music. Some of my favorite artists are Brandi Carlile (I've tried playing a song of hers on the violin by listening to it), Maggie Rogers, mxmtoon, and Teresa Bright. What music do you like to listen to? 

(Ironically, I'm currently procrastinating on practicing by commenting on this violin thread oops.) 

submitted by Lupine , The Hog’s Head
(October 21, 2021 - 10:04 am)

My computer keeps crashing and I've lost two comments! *growling*

Anyway, @Peregrine, I'll post some thoughts on plotting later, but I can't sit still any longer. I'm really reeeeeeeaaaaally bad at sitting still. But I wish you luck in your plotting endevers.

submitted by Blackfooted Bobcat
(October 18, 2021 - 1:43 pm)

Ahh, computers!  I look forward to your plotting thoughts whenever you have the time to type them out!

submitted by Peregrine
(October 19, 2021 - 10:32 am)

@Lupine: Most of my Japanese dolls (kokeshi, porcelain, sewn, etc) are saved for Hinamatsuri or displays, but I do admittedly take them down once in a while. (I don't know if I'm supposed to, but... hehe...) My grandma likes to send me really intricate paper dolls as well. And she sent me the Kanani American Girl doll when I was really little, because Kanani is from Hawaii (I'm from Hawaii) and is part Japanese. (If you can't tell, I'm Japanese.) I want to look at the Hinamatsuri stuff now : )

I mostly listen to classical music, largely Baroque, but I also love a lot of Russian/Nationalist composers. I have never met a Bach cantata I didn't like and also love Telemann's violin fantasias. And I love Bach's harpsichord concertos, especaially BWV 1056. I also like classic rock, and jazz, but mostly I listen to classical. I could go on and on about songs I like, but I won't make you read all to that ; ) (And I also like Hawaiian music, by coincidence.)

Thinking of music, I also looooove taiko drums. If you haven't seen any, you should look up a video. They're awesome. I don't know anything else about traditional Japanese music, though.

I'm technically supposed to be practicing right now too, but I've already gotten probably three hours today (which is around my average; I'm focusing in more on my instruments now and am trying to get up to four because I have a lot to work on) and have orchestra later tonight. My fingers are a little sore because I've been doing a lot of shifting and I don't want to not be able to play at orchestra, so I'm taking a break.

The mini library is a really cute idea, by the way!  

@Peregrine, maybe it would be a good idea to figure out what about the story is exciting you to write it and then base the plot around that. So if your interesting thing is a spellbook that only gives you certain spells at certain times, maybe the main external conflict is the main character needs to find creative ways to use the spells they are given to find a way out of a dungeon or something. Or maybe you could write the basic plot down as well. If you don't mind extra revision, maybe you could discovery write. I might say more later, but it's almsost time to get ready for orchestra.  

I'm really enjoying talking :DDD You guys are both really interesting. 

submitted by Blackfooted Bobcat
(October 21, 2021 - 5:12 pm)

That's really cool! I'm part Japanese too!! *is excited* Taiko drumming is awesome. There's a really good taiko drum group in my town and they often perform at events and schools. They even have some kid "trainees," so I thought it would be really fun to do that at some point when I'm a little older!

Three hours a day, wow! I probably average about half an hour :[ Ever since school started it's hard to get in enough time.

I enjoy talking with y'all as well!! What are your favorite books?

submitted by Lupine, The Shrieking Shack
(October 21, 2021 - 8:49 pm)

I love dolls, but I am really picky about them too.  Japanese doll wise I have a small porcelain doll made in Japan from a neighbor, and a Ushi Kawa Ken doll I found at a university.  I think I would like to add a kokeshi doll to my collection too.  I am also very fond of minatures and I have a plethora of Japanese erasers, tiny porcelain and stone figures, and handmade tiny people my sister and I make.  We made shoe box homes for them with funishings made of bits of wood and whatever else worked.  It was fun.  I think one of my favorite minatures is a couple of lucky cats (the Japanese word for them escapes my mind at the moment) I found.  One is the size of half my thumb, and the other is about the size of a third of my pinky.  They are so cute!

I have several minature books, but not enough to make a library.  You must have a ton, Lupine!

When do you do Hinamatsuri?  I have always enjoyed reading about the doll displays, and a small part of me has wanted to do it too, but I don't have a room for one.  Maybe I will do a small one.

I like listening to Celtic music, acapela, fiddle/bluegrass, and I listen to some classical (mostly solo violin Bach).  But not as much as I listen to Celtic music.   What Celtic bands do you listen too?  I listen to one Hawaiian piece: Over the Rainbow by Iz.

Taiko drums are really cool.  I love the power of drum beats, even with just a single person.  But it is aweing when hundreds of people beat together.  If you ever join your town's taiko drum group, Lupine, make sure you wear earplugs!  I'd really like to play the bodhran (Irish drum), and I am currently looking for one.  I may have found one...I'll see.

Thank you for the plotting tips, Blackfooted Bobcat!  I mostly discovery write and start over every 3 chapter.  I will have to try your ideas, maybe they will work better.  Plotting takes time, and it's more fun writing the story.  But I think plotting is worth while in the long run.

As for my favorite books: Lord of the Rings, Lord of the Rings, Lord of the Rings!  Then the Swallows and Amazons series by Arthur Ransome, and the My Side of the Mountain trilogy by Jean Craighead George.  I really like well written history books too.  Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown (the young readers edition) is excellent.

I am a huge Lord of the Rings fan and I could talk on, and on, and on, and on about it.  I love it so much.  Ever since I read it I haven't been able to find a fantasy book that comes close to it.  My family owns four or five copies of the trilogy.  I haven't watched the movies because I am afraid they will change the picture I have in my head of the scenery and the characters.  I'm afraid the movie won't be so vivid and beautiful as what I see in my head. 

I have been trying to read the Silmarillion.  But a bunch of people want it from my library and I can't read it fast enough.  I've been playing tug of war with everyone else who wants it.

Anyways, that's the end of my long post.  I am enjoying talking with you a lot!

Thank you for reading this, Admin!

submitted by Peregrine, The Prancing Pony
(October 22, 2021 - 2:10 pm)

I love your location box! I like Lord of the Rings too, but I haven't gotten through all the books yet. I was a LotR elf for Halloween a few years ago.

For Celtic music, I love the soundtracks of Song of the Sea, the Secret of Kells, and WolfWalkers. I also really like Enya, the Chieftains, and Sinead O'Connor. It is really good too! 

I love miniatures. We went to a really cool miniature museum in Vancouver Island once, and it had a fairy tale miniatures exhibit, a sci fi miniatures exhibit, and a dollhouse exhibit. I only have around 10 miniature books so it's a pretty small library xD

submitted by Lupine , The Green Dragon
(October 22, 2021 - 4:45 pm)