Thursday, April 19, 2018

On the Road in April

I've been out of town a lot this month, with two routes last week for The Royal Conservatory's Certificate Program in Halifax and Regina. The view in the picture above is from one of the rooms at the Maritime Conservatory of Performing Arts in Halifax, where I arrived just as the week's storms started to hit the Atlantic coast and just as my flu from the previous week was starting to abate. By the time of the first day of exams however, the sun was out and the weather was cold but bright. 

After Halifax, I had a day in Toronto followed by another short route in Regina. Going to Regina late last week meant that I dodged the ice storm that plagued so much of the region around Toronto, but the temperature was well below freezing for much of the short trip. 

Arriving in Langley, BC last Sunday, the sudden change in weather was a pleasant shock. The cheery blossoms are near the end of their blooming cycle in the Fraser Valley, so I was lucky to be able to catch a few pictures. 

This week I'm adjudicating for the Kiwanis Fraser Valley International Music Festival at Kwantlen Polytechnic University in Langley. The standard here is very high, and I'm continually impressed by the sophistication of repertoire choices from the young performers. The pianos in the picture above are a Fazioli on the outside and a Bechstein to its left. Fountain pens pictured above are a Waterman Expert Series I from the early 90's and a John Phelan custom cigar pen (yes, I collect fountain pens!). Next week I'm back to Toronto where I'll launch myself into one of the busiest times of the year.

A quick note to my students: I hope that you're reading this and I hope that you're practicing diligently. After hearing such excellent playing for the last two weeks, you can count on me being highly inspired. 

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