Thereís many fun things for me to do here in Logan, and I must say itís pretty nice not to have a schedule!
Going to the movies with my girls:
Also taking little day rides in the area (with a lovely passenger!):
Utah has these great little hamburger/dairy stops in just about every small town. The food and ice-cream is comically cheap, so we make bacon cheeseburgers a regular habit with big-ass ice-cream cones for dessert. The coneís prices are in cents! You just donít see that everywhere... Note the ďFry Sauce.Ē Itís some sort of vinegar/tomato dipping sauce that is kind of a Utah thing. Tasty!
Sometimes I infiltrate the orchestra pit to harass and annoy the worker bees. Pit playing is an interesting beast. Often a production has a long run, so the musicians get very familiar with their parts after a while. As the familiarity goes up so do the pit pranks and jokes. Since the audience canít usually see the pit musicians sometimes the shennanigans and inside jokes get pretty whacky. Iím an outsider this year, but itís still fun to stir things up during intermission...
Itís not ALL playtime for me, I do need to keep my practicing up for my upcoming auditions. I find that itís hard to squeeze in a significant amount of practice time with all these fun activities available to me!
Still life: My days in Logan. The beauty of nature, beer, and music! (and a plate...)
You never know whatís going to happen in the music business, so itís good to stay active and maintain professional and social contacts (which is probably true for most any profession!). I may want to play in the Utah Festival Opera Company again someday, and I also want to have some musical contact with my friends, so the music director letís me sit in for one of the concert performances on stage. I wasnít about to haul my tux and shoes with me across country along with all my other gear, so I set up an appointment with the company costume shop. This opera company is a big deal in this part of the country and in the summer they truck in sets and costumes from all over the place, including renting stuff from the Metropolitan Opera in New York. Professional wardrobe personnel, wig makers (these galsí work seems to never end!) set builders/painters, and production and lighting designers are all here living in Logan for the summer, the works.
The costume and fitting shop:
I joke with the costume crew as they run down the basement and find me a full tux (jacket, pants, shirt, bow tie AND shoes) in a matter of minutes. For some reason thereís an oven in the shop and some chocolate chip cookies come out just as Iím leaving. Score! This is pretty cool.
We stop for a quick photo on the way to the concert hall:
When I take pictures on my trips they're usually of the things that are fascinating and beautiful to me (like motorcycles!
), usually things that are out of the ordinary. When showing the photos of my adventures to others people often ask where the pictures of the music and musicians are. Oh yeah, I forgot about that! Concert settings are a difficult place to take pictures with the low, indoor lighting (and using the flash on stage is verboten!), and when Iím working my mind and hands are busy, and so is everybody elseís, so photos of the musical action are usually sparse, but Iím trying to get better! I suppose pics like these would be interesting to others!
Backstage some of the other pros want to try the Black Death. Most reactions upon seeing the viola are suspicious ďDoes it actually sound good?!?Ē Then after the individual tries it for a few minutes they often say, ďWow, it really sounds like a viola,Ē and ďHuh, I kinda want one!Ē
The concert is no big deal, a little fun menagerie of arias and show pieces, kind of a ďpopsĒ type program, but itís fun to be on stage with all my buds again and to show off my new avant garde instrument.