Thursday, September 15, 2011

Zee Blue Monkee!!!

Actually, I lie. I'm not going to tell you about blue monkeys. I'm not going to tell you about the master class either, mostly because I'm afraid someone I met there might stumble across this post and read it and tell the great master, and I will be banished forthwith from his sight in shame and degradation. Musicians do that, you know - google each other in secret to see who is doing what and accomplished such-and-sundry. Or maybe that's just me.

Suffice it to say, the past week managed to make me reeeeeeally tired of playing music.

So I ate this:

(Not all at once. Golly... How could you even think it?)

And watched this:

Yes indeed.

Look at the Cardinal Richelieu's expression in this next one. Look at it really closely. That was pretty much my expression through the whole thing.

Ahahaha. I make me laugh sometimes.

But the movie was definitely lacking class. I think they were trying to go for a sort of Pirates of the Caribbean fantasy/comedy/adventure vibe, but it didn't work for me. Weak plotting, weak directing, lots of Milla Jovovich speaking in husky bubblegum-American. Also, I didn't like the music. A good soundtrack covereth a multitude of sins, proof being The Village and Atonement and a bunch of other movies that I adoaah. This one had some sort of anachronistic James Bond-ish score, complete with drum pads and icky snyth. Didn't like.

The costumes were nice, though. And the ships flew. They fleeeew!

The best news of the month by far, is that I got two requests from agents to read my complete manuscript. Wooooo... That made me happy for about five minutes. All is not lost! They're both pretty terrifying and amazing agencies with NYT bestselling authors and such, so if I got an offer of representation from one of them I would be beyond happy. I would... I'd be...

I'd probably die.

Monday, September 5, 2011


Dear Person Sitting Next to Me in the Train: bathing in deoderant, cologne and/or air-freshener does not substitute taking a stupid shower!

That being said, this week is going to be terrible.

Tomorrow I have to play at a funeral. It's my third funeral in two weeks. I get paid for this. Isn't it faintly amusing how someone as insipid as an organist can profit from people dying? Haha. Ha.

On Wednesday I have rehearsal with a clarinetist who I have never met before, playing a Saint-Säens sonata that I have never played before. After that I have three hours of theory, and because our homework was to read something like fifty pages, I have a creeping dread that there is going to be a pop quize. Iiiii need to get that book sharp-like.

On Thursday I have rhythm class. I don't like rhythm class.

On Friday I'm in the newspaper.

On Saturday I have my very first solo concert. Ever. I'm not terribly worried about this one, mostly because I don't think anyone will come.

On Saturday I'm playing at a charity concert for the tsunami in Japan. The piece will be the aforementioned Saint-Säens sonata with the aforementioned clarinetist.

On Sunday I go to Schaffhausen to a master class which will go until Wednesday. This one I am terribly worried about. Geniuses everywhere, watching you while a famous dude tells you everything you're doing wrong. It's scaryyyy...
But whatever. I hope I survive. I hope I have some lovely success to report next week. If not, there will be much weeping and gnashing of teeth on this blog. And maybe a book review. :)

Saturday, September 3, 2011

And in my lady's chamber

Yesterday I started watching BBC's 1971 drama "Upstairs, Downstairs". Yes, I am very ashamed of myself. I haven't watched a television show since a very time-consuming obsession with "24" about five years ago. But because class divisons and the decline of the aristocracy are vastly more interesting that gun fights and bomb dismantlings, and because I have such a lot of work to avoid doing, I started watching this one.

I've only had time for two episodes so far; definitely not addicted yet. There's no over-arching plot to speak of - just vignettes detailing the struggles that go on inside a wealthy London household circa turn of the last century-  but watching the servant's life 'below stairs' is absolutely fascinating. From my non-expert point of view it seems super realistic. Some of the acting is really good. A few scenes are really well-written.

Here's one in which a bunch of the servants become drunk and pretend to be the lords and ladies of the house.

Rose, tipsy maid 1#: Annnnnd will we have the pleasure of seeing you at the races this weekend?"
Sarah, tipsy maid 2#: I'm afrraiiiid not. I am going up to Scotland to shoot peasents."
The footman: "They shoot goarse. Not peasents."
Maid : "Well, I'm going to shoot peasents. It's the latest thing, don't you kneeeew..."

On a completely unrelated note, look at this:

If you were also one of the many people who didn't make it to Briony's London birthday, that was her party cake.

Spoiled to the bone, I say.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Pictures that move

I'm determined to watch all the movies on this list before the end of 2011. Determined.

The Three Musketeers - The new one. With the flying ships. It looks terrible. But the ships... they flyyyy!

Anonymous - Whose bright idea was it to have Roland Emmerich direct a movie about Shakespeare? Also, the trailer music is rubbish. But it's Elizabethan, and has pretty costumes and cinematography.

Hugo - Martin Scorseses + clockpunk! The trailer looks decidedly 'meh' but ya know... clockpunk.

Hanna - On DVD because I missed it in theaters. Joe Wright is an amazing director.

The Lovely Bones - Waaaay behind on this one so also on DVD. Peter Jackson is also an amazing director. You heard it here first.

Never Let Me Go - Milli recommended this one to me. It's supposed to be sad. Sad movies are the best. Also I like the soundtrack. And it has mild sci-fi elements. Sci-fi + tragedy + cello solos. I am intrigued.

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows - I honestly haven't seen the first one. It looked dumb. It was directed by Guy Ritchie. Neither of those things make me want to watch a movie. Now that I've moved on from literary snobbery and can accept the fact that Hollywood needs to steal instantly recognizeable cardboard cutouts so that they have a built-in audience, I think I will watch this movie. More pretty costumes, and I like the shot in the trailer of the tray falling.