100 Days of Practice - The Final Countdown (70-100)

Admittedly, I did not keep a record of the last thirty days of this challenge. It was that time in the orchestra season, full of crazy performance schedules, upcoming audition prep, and student recitals, auditions, chair tests, and professional odds and ends. Based on my memory of what was happening at the time, I have pieced together some of the high lights of the last month of my “100 Days of Practice” Challenge.

Day 73

TSO performed a super cool concert featuring NASA footage of the planets while we the orchestra performed Gustav Holst's “The Planets." We opened the show with music from Star Trek and Star Wars. It was incredibly fun, and the hall was packed. So many students in the audience and even my parents came from Michigan to see the show. I heard rave reviews from everyone who attended the event.

Day 75

The Philbrook Museum granted me a “Me Time Monday” which was a tremendous honor! The idea is that I have the entire museum to myself on a Monday (when they are typically closed) to do whatever I want. My mom thought this was fantastic as we had the entire museum to ourselves for the whole day.

I spent the day performing different songs for each of my family members in different rooms of the museum. I picked the music based on what they love, and what reminds me of them. My mom acted as my videographer and art director with the help of her new BFF at the museum (who does this sort of thing for a living). I packed some tea and scones as an afternoon snack, and we sat in the garden and enjoyed a cream tea. The weather was perfect.

performed in loving memory of my Grandfather, Glen Larson, at the Philbrook Museum, Tulsa OK on April 16, 2018.

The second part of my “Me Time Monday” was devoted to a live stream concert performed by the students of Harmony Project Tulsa and a garden party. It was probably the cutest thing on the internet! The kids were dressed up and (as I thought might happen) pretended like they lived in a fancy mansion. They ran around the grounds like they owned them, and pranced down the stairs in their fanciest dresses. It was the perfect way to use the museum. Some of the families came, many of whom had never even been to the Philbrook, and several of the museum employees watched the concert. I was so proud of the kids. They were perfect.


After spending the entire day at the museum (I was so tired), I went to the first rehearsal of Mahler 5 with the Signature Symphony. It is crazy hard, and I was a little stressed about it. I’m putting way too much time that needs to be going towards the upcoming audition into this piece. !

Day 78

I went directly from Signature Symphony rehearsal of Mahler 5 (OMG! This piece is fantastic and also so so SO tricky) to Wichita. Yes, that’s correct, I began my 2 hours 40-minute drive at 9:30 at night. Thank you world for audiobooks and coffee for keeping me awake!

Tomorrow morning, Emily and I are performing a duo recital as part of a project run by “Chamber Music at the Barn” that brings chamber music to casual and unusual venues. Emily and I woke up early and rehearsed all morning before heading downtown to the office building lobby that served as our venue for the day. The lobby was so resonant that I swear every note was booming loud and lasted for at least 8 seconds.

After the performance, we grabbed some lunch and a coffee then I headed back to Tulsa for the next Mahler rehearsal. This piece is seriously stressing me out! It is so hard and unrelenting! Every time you turn a page, it just gets more and more difficult. This is the last concert of the season for Signature Symphony. Also on the program, is a world premiere by Noam Faingold, commissioned by maestro Andres Franko for the Signature Symphony. It is a walk in the park compared to the Mahler.

Day 79

Work on Mozart Concerto in D major

Day 89

I performed an education concert in the morning at one of the elementary schools in Tulsa. These concerts become more and more fun with every performance. Afterward, I headed to OKC to play with Ben Folds and the OKC Philharmonic. I was never officially a Ben Folds fan when I was younger, but I was surprised by how many songs I recognized. It was an entertaining show, and the catering between the rehearsal and concert was delicious! I was tempted just to eat and eat and eat but then was worried I wouldn’t fit in my concert clothes.

Brahms Symphony No. 4, 3rd movement opening and last page excerpts

Day 90

Shostakovich Symphony No. 5 rehearsal 9-12 Bach Solo Sonata in A minor Movement 1, Adagio

Day 93

I played at a super fancy luncheon garden party today. I often work with Annie Brady of Magpie Events, and she knows how to throw the most beautiful parties. This one was gorgeous, but it was so hot I just wanted to jump in the pool! Afterward, I taught some lessons and did my own practice.

Day 94

The final Tulsa Youth Symphony concert of the season was tonight. I dragged Jeff with me to the auction and concert. I had so many students performing that I just had to go and support them. I was excited to see that one was promoted to concertmaster of the top ensemble for half of the program. What an honor!

Bach Solo Sonata in A minor I. Adagio

Day 95

1st page of Don Juan by Strauss and Shostakovich Symphony No. 5 rehearsal 32-37

Day 97

I had a dressage lesson with Laurie. Eliot isn’t exactly a beautiful mover as far as horses are concerned, but dressage really helps me understand my aids and enhances my connection with him (as in, my communication gets so much more clear). We’ve been working on the Prix Caprilli course. I love Eliot, he may not be a perfect mover, but he is a darn good horse. Very obedient, seems to enjoy his job, and tries hard, what more can you ask for? With an attitude like that, I wish he was one of my violin students, lol.

Day 100


TSO had our homegrown pops concert this evening. It was a sort of bonkers mash-up of every type of music from Jazz to Classical featuring a local singer-songwriter, members of the Tulsa Youth Symphony, a bassoon quartet, a tuba and piccolo duet, our principal cellist, and a local piano soloist. It was kind of bananas. There were so many shifts in instrumentation and genre. The rehearsal process was stressful with so much on the program and not much time to spend working on anything. We did have a few performers from Wichita join us, which was fun, and Emily drove down to hang out with everyone for the weekend.

Between the dress rehearsal and the concert, I competed in the Prix Caprilli 1 and 2 dressage events at Sonrise Stables and won! What a pleasant surprise! Also, several of my orchestra colleagues came all the way out to the barn (it is really far away from the concert hall and hotel). It was so touching and sweet that they came to support me. I was so appreciative, but I think they secretly just wanted to meet the horses.

Waving goodbye to the 100 Days of Practice Challenge.

Waving goodbye to the 100 Days of Practice Challenge.

And there you have it. This completes the summary of my "100 Days of Practice" Challenge. I missed a total of five days out of 100, not bad, but it kind of grates on me. I might need to do it again just to ensure that I get all 100!

The next post will show you all of the progress of my students so stay tuned!