January 17, 2014

Timing is Everything

by Alan Lowne

Violinist Alan Lowne will join the musicians of the RPO on January 22, 2014, for the first-ever RPO / Community Orchestra concert. Read Alan's thoughts on the experience below:

Getting an email a couple of weeks ago telling me I’d made it into the RPO Side-by-Side Orchestra was a wonderful surprise--especially since my oboe-playing wife Carol had already gotten her acceptance letter. Then I checked the music to be played--Liszt's Les Preludes, full of fast-moving arpeggios--and realized this meant some hard work was needed. I re-read the email and noticed that it said “First Desk,” which meant that I’d be placed next to the illustrious Juliana Athayde (don’t panic!) So, some serious “woodshedding” occurred. But I needn’t have been nervous. Juliana and the other RPO musicians were so welcoming and friendly to us fresh-faced amateurs.

Playing alongside these world-class musicians is a marvelous opportunity, and the rehearsal last week went wonderfully. Paul Shewan is a very clear conductor who knows what sound he wants and clearly defines it.

In ‘real life’ I’m an electronics engineer and a small business owner (5’1” actually – I was downsized from Kodak; I used to be 6’3”). I am also Assistant Concertmaster of the Penfield Symphony Orchestra and Concertmaster of the Greece Symphony, but playing alongside the RPO performers instead of watching from the audience is a rare experience. The concert itself will be very exciting!

I realize that my most important task, however, is to turn the music pages at the right time for Juliana. Timing is everything. Make sure you are there to see if I get it right ...


Alan said...

The concert experience was FANTASTIC!
If you missed it, there's a rumor that it might happen again next year ... 1250 enthusiastic supporters made it out on a very cold night, ging all participants a standing ovation!

Alan said...