Final Mahler

  1. Tom Wright
    Tom Wright
    I played what could be my last Mahler 7 this week, at our summer venue outside of Chicago, Ravinia Festival. I am entering a sabbatical year in September, no orchestra playing, and hope to retire from my section viola job afterward. I plan to have lots of time for mandolin, starting with the CMSA convention, and the Symposium next summer.

    I used my Buchanan 10-string, whose large body adds depth to the tone, and whose smooth sustain lent greater expression possibilities to the spare part Mahler offers the mandolin. Sometimes the mandolin is answering the harp, which invites a rich sustaining tone, sometimes doubling the french horn and needing midrange focus, and sometimes doubling the flute, calling for sweet tone and controlled articulation.

    The Buchanan projected very well---I was able to back off and use a wide dynamic range. I have changed my pick grip and improved my tremolo and got nice results from a 1mm Dunlop Ultex (standard shape).

    I am about ready to record some video with good sound, probably will try the Bach D major cello suite Prelude first, since it is perfectly suited to a 5-course instrument. Other works in progress include Tarrega's "Recuerdos de la Alhambra), which is also very comfortable on a 10-string in its original key.
  2. aconnormartin
    Best of luck to you in this turning point in your musical career. The group would probably love to hear what you have recorded once you are finished!

  3. Tom Wright
    Tom Wright
    Not so final, it seems. I just got hired by Lyric Opera in Chicago to play the Otello mandolin part, and I'll be onstage in costume. Unfortunately, it precludes attending the CMSA convention which I had booked. Here's hoping I make it to the Symposium next June.
Results 1 to 3 of 3