I had my cello lesson yesterday, and my teacher was pleased with my progress.
I spent a few minutes going over my bow hold with her, and I feel so much more confident about that now. And relieved, because I was right about me doing it wrong. So I’m glad I knew enough to ask about it. And she helped me fix some of my fingering issues, too. What was hilarious was me learning how to position my hands based on where her callouses are. That’s how I saw exactly where to hold my right thumb on the bow, and exactly how my left fingers should land on the strings. I still have to work it into my practices so I get it right, but seeing the callouses helped immensely. We worked on my bowing, too, because (like most newbies) I had some angle problems and placement drift as I played.
She was surprised (pleasantly, I think!) when she showed me the piece of music I’m supposed to learn this week and I sight-read (and played) it after hearing her do it once. It’s a short and easy piece, just on two strings, and I didn’t play it perfectly (far from it, actually), but I did know the notes on the page and their corresponding fingerings (although I wasn’t on perfect pitch or anything). She said she wasn’t expecting me to get past the second measure on my first try. I just felt like I could keep going, so I did, and she said it was pretty good for a first attempt by a newbie (I’m paraphrasing). I need to practice it a bunch so it sounds better, because my bowing was awful, but it wasn’t terrible.
I’m having trouble with one of the Twinkle Twinkle Little Star (hereby abbreviated to TTLS) variations, though; it’s a weird rhythm and I kept slipping up. So I need to practice that more.
I can do the C major scale in two octaves now. That’s cool.
Also, it felt good to play with another person. She obviously has years of experience in figuring out what the other person is doing, like keeping up perfectly with my note lengths. But doing even a very simple duet was a neat feeling, especially when my pitch was (mostly) matching hers.
She was actually irritated when we ran out of time, which I consider to be a good sign because it meant she wasn’t bored with me. (I wish I could afford a full hour with her, but that’s $60 a week and I just can’t do it.) While I packed up we chatted for another few minutes. She’s actually played reggae on the cello before. Bizarre and awesome. She invited me to hear her do a gig Friday night, which is cool. I’m definitely going. I like her bunches.