First of all, thank you to everyone who came to my concert on 28 Feb with Liz Roberts and Janet Evans, and to all those others who couldn’t make it but who gave me so much encouragement and support. It was my first recorder performance for about twenty years, so although it was a short programme, in a small venue, filled with friends, it was a really big moment for me. As I sat listening to Liz opening the evening with Lascia ch’io pianga I still wondered whether I would actually be able to stand up and play, but from the moment I lifted my recorder to my lips, things felt good, and I thoroughly enjoyed myself. Apparently my enjoyment was also evident to the audience, so I’m very glad that came across.
It was by no means a flawless performance – there were little slips of fingers and brain all over the place, although not in the very hardest runs of the Berkeley sonatina, which gives me hope. The bits that went best were those passages where I really felt connected to what the piano was doing. I don’t get the chance to practice regularly with a pianist, so I’ve learnt that in future, I must learn and absorb the accompaniment into my mind right from the outset of learning new music. There’ll be plenty of useful technical feedback coming in my next lesson too
As a reviewer, I found it a very useful reminder too of what performers have to go through, and also of how an audience’s perceptions can be quite different from those of the soloist. My first thoughts when the concert finished were mostly negative, but at a distance, I’m able to look at the overall experience, not just the slips and stumbles; I hope that’s a healthy way to do it, as it stops me from brooding over what went wrong. It has taught me that I have a long way to go before I’m up to diploma performance standards, but it was a first step on a road that I now know I definitely want to continue exploring.