I’d like to start by wishing all those who visit this page and read my blog a very happy and healthy new year.
I brought the new year in by playing with the British Concert Philharmonic Orchestra in a New Year’s Eve Gala in Buxton Opera House. The gigs I do with this orchestra tend to involve getting the music on the day and spending the rehearsal sightreading, then practising like mad in the breaks and hoping for the best in the gig. NYE was no different. The first half felt like back-to-back harp solos. O Mio Babbino Caro, The Pearl Fishers Duet, Meditation from Thais, it was never ending! These are pieces that I learnt the part for years ago – while at school – for ‘the future’. Well, I’m glad I did but even so the rehearsal was rather stressful. I spent the time between the rehearsal and the concert drinking coffee and note-bashing.
Weirdly enough, the gig itself went really well. Must have been that sneaky practice I did before. Part of me loves these gigs where you turn up and sightread, it means you can’t get stressed before the day because you don’t know the programme yet. On the other hand, I can’t hang a sign on my harp that says ‘I’m sightreading!’ just so the audience (and the players) will forgive my mistakes. Having the chance to fully prepare is obviously preferable.
The concert finished at around 12.30am at which point it was time to drive back to Manchester for a few chilled out New Year drinks (lemonade only as I was driving).
I’ve made a few New Year’s Resolutions, firstly, be less messy, secondly, carry on running three times a week (which I successfully achieved in December – woo!), thirdly, wear dresses more often, and finally, stick to working hours during the day (see my previous post on keeping schedules).
In fact, on the subject of running, here’s a photo from my run on the moor near my parents’ house. It was a gorgeously crisp morning, a little icy, but beautiful none the less: