Saturday, October 26, 2013

Busy Bee

It feels like it's been ages since I've found time to log in and write a blog! I promise a video soon. I've been super busy, but life is good!!!

I've been focused on a huge list of things that need to be completed at CU, and also with new employment too. I wanted to make sure that my work was also music-related, and luckily I've been provided that! I help students test/pick out instruments, upgrade to intermediate or professional models, and help finance them! It's provided a great learning opportunity since I get to deal with the "music business" aspect of the field, and better understand instrumental rental and finance contracts. I also enjoy meeting all the teachers, and students/musicians.

This last week I ordered a new mouthpiece to try. I've been playing on my gold plated Farkas DC throughout rehabilitation, but you know how much I love experimenting to see if a size difference helps even the slightest bit. So far, my G17 helps with my mid-to-low range where my symptoms primarily effect me, but it lacks comfort and even harder to pivot from range to my larger interval jumps are even more difficult to execute.

I decided to give the latest Dennis Wick-Paxman a try, so went ahead and ordered a DWPAX-6. It looks like the size of a trombone mouthpiece, but I want to see if this peculiar shaped mouthpiece will "feel" different enough to help me re-sensitize and also help with the size of my lips. I have to say I'm quite excited. It's larger, and it may help with my lower lip that can't seem to fit into my other mouthpieces which is causes me a ton of difficulties. I wanted to try something much bigger than what I typically play on. I am excited and will upload a video once it arrives and I try it out for a bit!

As far as my playing, I've definitely been building up my high chops. Well...I mean...high chops for me now classify as my treble clef range (space C up to line F on the top of the staff)...haha! Not like before where I didn't classify anything as high playing unless it was well above the staff....baroque stratosphere.

I'm really happy! I've now started playing excerpts!!! My large interval movement/jumps have been getting better. It's hard to describe how, but here's a go at it.....I've found air attacks help me land on lower pitches after jumping off a higher one, causes me to not have as many spasms. Therefore, there is a TON of large movements in my face, yet the feeling of "lack of control" and chances of spasms/involuntary contractions has lessened significantly. Because it is hard for the viewer (visually) to tell the difference between what movements are dystonic and which are intentional/a result of my air attacks, it's hard to see the improvement.

I'm able to tell there's a difference in improvement, because I "feel" it...but I think for the viewer, the best evidence is in the way I sound, despite all the large movement. It "sounds" more comfortable to me and like it's "easier" to play, despite all the movement. For me, a dystonic movement is one that doesn't enable that is out of my own control.

Anywhoo! There's a lot to catch up on, and hopefully I'll be able to keep up on the blog, at least once a month at the least. That's all I have to write for now! Thanks for reading, and for your support throughout my recovery.....I remain optimistic as always!

- Katie