Perfecting a piece in a (very) short time


Sax-Mad fiend!
Café Supporter
The Malverns, Worcs
I have to perfect my part for the Arrival of the Queen of Sheba before Monday. I was told this last Monday. I am having serious problems doing this, and it's now filling my every waking hour!
The Sax ensemble will be recording this on Monday, and the lady who was playing it is not able to play then.
I have never actually played it with the group.
I have a recording of the group playing it.
I can sort of play it on my own, but when it comes to putting it together with the recording I fall apart.
Would listening to it and reading the score help? Singing it and tapping the beat?
I can't play the sax continuously to practice (I do have another life!)
I think I know how the whole piece goes, it's just hitting all those semi-quavers at the right time, speed, fingers etc.
help! I don't want to let them down :crying:
For the semi quavers, count in halves. so if the song is at 100bpm, count at 200bpm. This will mean that the subdivision for the semiquavers will then only be subdivisions of 2. Quavers will be like crotchets and crotchets like minums and semi-quavers like normal quavers. It'll make it easier to judge the half length of all note stems.

After a while, you will be able to just feel the subdivisions and not have to count in halves, but automatically know what each grouping of notes will sound like. The next stage will be not to count at all and feel the song, and then you will stay in time, with the correct rhythm, and not have to be concentrating on 1,2,3,4,2,2,3,4, etc. Your playing will become better when you can concentrate on the melody, emotions and sound/tone that is coming from your horn when you get to a point where you feel the time, but not actually think about counting.
I would listen to it and read the score at the same time whilst listening to the part you will be playing, do that as many times as you can til you feel you've internalised it then play it without the backing at a slower speed that you can manage, so your fingers develop the muscle memory....then gradually speed it up and try again to the backing....hope that helps good luck! :mrcool
You will do it okay. Surprisingly the fact that you are playing with a group will lift your skill set. Once jammed with a member of the Omega Guitar Octet and he had us playing chords that I didn't know, yet managed to skip through by playing roots and the odd fifth, octave and whatever interval he shouted. Sounded quite good on replay and no one spotted my mistakes, if there were any.

Like a choir, it improves your confidence, so go get 'em, girl, 'cos the caff© is with you.
Well, I was surprised and very pleased. :welldone

Following on from advice here and from my teacher, who was kind enough to squeeze me in on Saturday after her students' exam rehearsals and before we went out to play at a local Christmas market (again), I slowed the whole thing down and mastered a) where my fingers should be going and b) the tonguing and slurring.

Although playing along to a recording of the ensemble was nearly impossible for me, :crying: playing it live with the ensemble seemed to be so much easier. :thumb:

I wasn't perfect, but I felt I did really well, and the sax player next to me was kind enough to comment positively. :D

Happy bunny, now with more time to really polish the edges :welldone
Adopts smug expression and says, "I told you so." >:)

Well done Mandy. Bit of faith in your own ability and support from your fellow musicians and it will be Mahler's Symphony of a Thousand next. ;}
As an afterthought. Don't volunteer to make a thousand waistcoats.>:)
OG, I just have one more waistcoat to make.... I won't be volunteering for the whole big band, let alone the 1000 voices!

I also forgot to tell you - my teacher advised me to read the score without the sax to get the tonguing and slurring in the right places. I spent the weekend driving my husband, children and parents (who were visiting) mad by either playing the piece incessantly or sitting on the sofa singing "tuh-uh-uh-uh, tuh-uh-uh-uh, tuh-uh, tuh-uh..." ho hum!
I spent the weekend driving my husband, children and parents (who were visiting) mad by either playing the piece incessantly or sitting on the sofa singing "tuh-uh-uh-uh, tuh-uh-uh-uh, tuh-uh, tuh-uh..." ho hum!

Trying to get sectioned?

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