Today Jeff (the guitar player) and I had our first coaching with Dawn Harms. She's a violinist with the San Francisco Symphony who teaches at Stanford. Jeff and I have been working on a couple of duos since the fall, but haven't been able to get a faculty coach until now. We played the first section of "In the Dragon's Garden" by David Kechley. The piece was inspired by the composer's visit to a Japanese garden and starts out with a dreamy, rippling effect. It was really helpful to have another pair of ears to guide us through the piece. Dawn had a lot of great suggestions to bring out the drama in the piece. We'll work on the next section at our next meeting. We hope to perform the whole thing at the June chamber music recital.
Dawn runs a week-long chamber music camp called Music at Kirkwood during the summer. That's something I'd like to do someday - spend a week in the mountains playing chamber music. Of course, it takes a few days to get used to the altitude, so the wind players always have a hard time breathing at first. It would still be a lot of fun.