February 12, 2017

Some Birds Can't Sing

Some birds are not meant to sing. And a few of those birds will never realise that they can't, to the great concern of surrounding ears. The case inspiring this little ink-and-aqua is special: I had a certain songbird with me on a Christmas concert last December, which we, avian and pianist, sort of survived. So when she said that she could do Swedish traditional music for elderly ears this February I sort of believed her. I still believed her on the first rehearsal; she said that she was overworked, exhausted, we can all have a bad day. So I expected her to find her bearings better on the dress rehearsal, i.e. the last one before show.

She didn't. She lost them altogether. It actually got much worse.

Some of the tunes that she knew so very well she only knew well for a few bars if I played them beforehand. A few had faded even closer into atonal oblivion, and Jumping Jesse Almighty, the phrasing... all ragtag shambles, on some. Songbird has a trained voice. Songbird can reach very high tones without breaking them too much. If Songbird could find the right tones too I would be all the happier, as I wouldn't lose money -- it's too late to find a replacement now.

From the process: Pencil...

...and ink.

And next, as you saw, watercolours. And frustration, lots of.

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