Patricia Ahern (violin)
We just finished our first rehearsals of the Rachel Podger programme. It was a full day of 6 hours of rehearsal, and yet the time just flew! Rachel is so friendly and sweet, but she is very detailed in all her requests, bringing out nuances and phrasing in every suggestion. I love when she takes apart the music by rehearsing one section at a time (first bass line, then violas, etc.), and giving each line gesture and purpose. She has so much energy, it's impossible to tell that she is at all jet-lagged from her journey to Toronto. Her concertos sound amazingly brilliant, but she is never egotistical and graciously takes the back seat when some other instrument has a more interesting part. I am impressed that she is playing a Vivaldi concerto which requires scordatura tuning (alternate tuning of the violin): it means she must pay extra attention to the different pitches coming out of the instrument, and the violin itself has to get used to the transition! All in all, I had a wonderful day, and I'm looking forward to more inspiring music-making tomorrow!