On Monday 22nd October a group of us set out bright and early for Xinghai Conservatorium for a day of tutoring and mentoring. It was a tightly packed schedule as we still had to make a 5pm flight for Wuhan.
After a late arrival of the bus at our hotel and a misunderstanding on the part of the bus driver as to exactly where the venue was, we were left with merely an hour to impart our wisdom and skills to our respective groups of music students eagerly awaiting us.
I found my group of 2nd violins to be very well prepared with the Berlioz and Beethoven Overtures and very quick to respond to my requests, expertly translated by our own violinist, Emily Qin.
After this intensive tutorial, we had ran through the pieces with Jessica Cottis, our Assistant Conductor, with all SSO tutors playing alongside the students.
A quick buffet lunch at a nearby hotel was followed by the culmination of the day’s work – a rehearsal with Maestro Vladimir Ashkenazy. Again the music students were keen to improve. My stand-partner, the leader of the 2nd Violins, who spoke some English, exclaimed at the end of the day – “I’m really going to miss you”!
To top off the day’s proceedings before we were whisked off to the airport, Jian Wang our cello soloist for the Tour, performed his Chinese encore piece with four of the cello students.
It was a most fulfilling day all-round and I hope we can follow-up on future occasions with similar activities.
Principal 2nd violin