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November Music Thread

(762 Posts)
Wafflenose Tue 01-Nov-16 08:13:55

Let's have a new thread for November... I'm not sure if the old one will last long enough. This is a place to talk about music lessons, practice, exams and anything to do with learning instruments/ singing. We have beginners and advanced players of all ages.

I am mum to two girls - Goo (newly 11) - Flute, Recorder and Piano, and Rara (8) - Cello, Recorder, and one month of Clarinet so far. She won't put the clarinet down, so I think we've found The One.

woolleybear Tue 01-Nov-16 08:50:29

Second bassoon lesson tonight for dd, so will see further how the group thing will work. dd desperately hoping she will learn some "other hand" notes.

Grade 3 pieces going well on clarinet though not sure she will still want to be playing them in Feb/March time. Scales mastered apart from D minor I think and a bit of work on the chromatic one.

LooseAtTheSeams Tue 01-Nov-16 10:11:04

Hello all and many thanks to Waffle for new thread!
IGrumpy Teenager (lack of sleep) was at marching band last night. They sound awesome but are drowning out the other groups practising in same building! He has grade 5 theory coming up and bass guitar grade 6 later this month.
DS2 is 11 and plays cello and piano but no exams on the horizon!smile
I am an adult learner who should just about be ready for her grade 4 piano exam in March. Last night's lesson went well. I can do the sight singing for aural and clap the rhythms but keep forgetting what I'm doing during the echoes! How do small children manage to do this stuff?!!

onlymusic Tue 01-Nov-16 14:07:56

Will try to follow this thread religiously!
I have dd1 (still 8 but not for long) who is playing violin and piano and ds2 (5) who has started violin recently. Dd is doing grade 3 theory next week, otherwise no exams for us this year. Next year plans are grade 5 theory and violin. Piano is put on hold for the time being. Depending on how she gets on with grade 3 theory we may switch to practical musicianship exam (or whatever it is called).

Wafflenose Tue 01-Nov-16 14:12:47

We found Grade 3 a very useful warm-up for Grade 5. Goo was pretty consistent and got 89% for Grade 3 and 90% for Grade 5, which was exactly what she wanted! I think if you can manage Grade 3, you can easily carry on. I need to sort Rara out soon... she has been hovering around Grade 1 exam level for Theory for a year. We need to finish off the last bit of the book, and move on. She does Trinity for Cello and Recorder, but will do ABRSM with me if she wants to do Clarinet exams, so if we can keep the theory at the same grade as clarinet, she should be OK.

Fleurdelise Tue 01-Nov-16 14:18:54

Thank you for the new thread Waffle!

I have DD 9 who plays piano and started clarinet in June with a break over the summer and she is taking grade 1 clarinet this term. Next plans are grade 5 piano next year, 11 plus next September and then focus on music theory so we can get it out of the way.

If it takes a bit longer with grade 5 theory she could always skip grade 6 piano and take grade 7 once she's done theory so no pressure there.

gillybeanz Tue 01-Nov-16 14:26:43

I can't believe we are onto monthly threads now. How well it is supported too with no arguing. It has to be a first on here grin
Thanks Waffle. It's nice to see that once again music has the ability to bring people together. thanks for all parents of musical children.

onlymusic Tue 01-Nov-16 14:52:10

Thank you Wafflenose! I hope it will work, my concern is that, as you may remember, she has what I can vaguely describe as learning difficulties smile, that is she has certain issues which may get on her way to learning... It is a matter of how she copes with them during written exam.... Oh well, we shall see...

onlymusic Tue 01-Nov-16 14:54:31

I think it is an atmosphere of support and non judgement in this thread which attracts people gillybeanz. Which is hosted by Wafflenose of course!

Wafflenose Tue 01-Nov-16 14:56:40

I really like it here. It's a calm corner of Mumsnet!

drummersmum Tue 01-Nov-16 15:02:45

Amazing going Waffle !
DS 14 doing piano (classical and jazz), and percussion (drum-kit, tuned and orchestral) and our his life it's just totally crazy and he can't be happier with it!! This week he will be meeting a composer who he meets every few months and will get feedback on a piano and marimba duet he worked on last summer which I his unbiased mum love and he's looking forward to see what composer says! Grade 8 drum kit exam in a few days, plus two school concerts playing with symphony orchestra, concert band, big band, jazz sextet and latin jazz band, plus school musical with five performances before Christmas. And he's considering playing for the next school musical in Feb/March when he already has two competitions, two auditions and two concerts because there's only 24 hours in a day... grin.

drummersmum Tue 01-Nov-16 15:26:54

By the way Nicky and Loose I wanted to thank you for your supportive messages re the future plans. It all helps flowers

disorganisedmummy Tue 01-Nov-16 16:01:59

Hi all,I also follow this thread religiously! Ds is 10 and plays violin. He is around grade 5 standard although has only taken grade 1 exam. He is hopefully going to be auditioning for Junior Guildhall in the new year. We're looking round it in Saturday-ds is so excited!!
We are told that he's gifted has has perfect pitch amongst other things. He may/may not. Not really bothered but he is definitely looking to pursue a career in music. He needs to work on this theory (he's around grade 2 standard and I just starting work in grade 3. He also has Aspergers. He is currently at an indie school which goes up to 16 which supports him very well though I'm worried about the music as this is not an arras they're known for. We don't have many other options tbh school wise so it's a suck and see scenario. Hoping that Guildhall will give him a really solid musical base if he's lucky enough to get s place.

onlymusic Tue 01-Nov-16 16:33:35

disorganisedmummy, just to let you know, I pm-ed you few days ago-not that I demand any reply grin, but as I recently discovered that I had a message sitting in my inbox since May which I haven't read shock I thought I let you know here just in case smile

onlymusic Tue 01-Nov-16 16:37:35

drummersmum is your ds studying composition? dd's teacher mentioned that there is smth we may need to consider in a future as dd likes improvising sort of things.... I am more interested in jazz piano though, but I am not sure how to have it all taking into account there are only 24 hours and two children! Piano already suffered immensely sad

disorganisedmummy Tue 01-Nov-16 16:39:38

only- omg I'm so sorry. I will check my in box as soon as I'm home.

gillybeanz Tue 01-Nov-16 17:09:22


I think it's important that your ds is in a school that supports him, it's worth its weight in gold.
we know that no schools round here would provide good music lessons nor offer the kind of support that dd has atm.
It's a difficult balance but junior Guildhall will be a great opportunity fo him, I'm sure he'll be fine.

DD has just started scales for this years assessment. She knows all the ones to grade 8, level 1 at her school. Now for level 2 she has to do other type of scales and harmony, jazz scales and chords.
Next years look really hard and are level 3 equivalent to 1st year undergrad
She says it's hard as once your fingers are used to normal scales you have to undo it all again and your fingers want to follow what they are used to.
Please don't anyone ask me what they are as I haven't got a clue grin
All I know is they get harder every year, like you'd expect I suppose.

Pradaqueen Tue 01-Nov-16 17:39:30

Ooh new thread? Don't mind if I do...

Thanks waffle! Agree this thread is a little bit of what I would consider to be the 'true spirit' of the original intention of mumsnet - support and non-judgemental advice.

Miniprada is 10 and is possibly going for G7 violin this term and G6 piano or we might hold off until the new year as we have to concentrate on 11+ entrance exams and audition pieces. She has a music festival the month grin

se22mother Tue 01-Nov-16 17:57:28

I also follow this thread religiously. I have dd 8 grade 3 violin, grade 1 clarinet and theory. these threads are a great source of advice and wealth of experience

Greenleave Tue 01-Nov-16 18:11:01

Thanks Waffle, cant believe we have now got to the monthly one.

I have an 8 yrs old, plays violin and piano. We are having piano exam this term however practice peak hasnt happened yet. Things usually are rushed at the last minutes in this house hold so I am pretending that I am calm in the mean time.

Opposite from you Only who is doing so well on practical side, we are more afraid of practical exams. Mine had although found theory very interesting, I have no idea how did she learn it neither her teacher

Doubleup Tue 01-Nov-16 18:15:01

Hi, I found the October thread and thought I might join you for November. I have DD1 (13) who plays oboe and sax and DD2 (9) on bassoon and guitar. Grade 5 sax and theory this term for the eldest and just had a bassoon free half term after NCO audition. Nice to see another bassoonist on here!

Icouldbeknitting Tue 01-Nov-16 19:01:22

Ah November, the annual march for the Remembrance Service followed more or less immediately by the start of the Christmas season. Last year saw my husband having his chestnuts roasted over an open fire not once but twice because he'd not put all the band engagements on the calendar and so DS (16) found himself double booked. I stepped right back out of that one and let DH sort it out himself so I suspect that he'll be making more of an effort this year to keep the calendar up to date.

DS plays with two brass bands, a youth brass band, the county wind band, two groups at music centre and will appear for anyone who finds themselves short of a player for a concert. Christmas is a band's harvest and there are only so many playing opportunities in the six weeks up to the 24th so there's something on every weekend. The last time I counted he played 31 times on the run up to Christmas (there were some days with three jobs). That was a couple of years ago and I took the decision to stop counting them so I could plead ignorance if school ever asked.

He's started A levels this year and it's a fresh start at college where they don't wear uniform so I will have no problems this year keeping up with the supply of white shirts for concerts. We have decided to use the same approach that worked through secondary school which is tell them nothing that they don't need to know because it only makes them start fretting about their exam results.

That's me covered until January, just as well because all I'll be doing until then is making sure all the white shirts are washed and checking that everyone has been fed appropriately before they vanish out of the door.

woolleybear Tue 01-Nov-16 19:11:51

Doubleup, we will be asking for bassoon advice! Second lesson went well, only three of them today, one seemed to have practiced hard in the break as dd has and one appeared not to have practiced at all!

No new notes, and we are to practice two tunes which dd has already been playing but she came out positive having had good advice on how to improve how she holds the instrument etc.

Clarinet pieces are at a phase where she is enjoying them so we will practice that more this week.

LooseAtTheSeams Tue 01-Nov-16 19:44:42

Just wanted to chime in and say this is also my favourite place on mumsnet and to express my great excitement at drummersmum's DS and his composing experiences! Do let us know how he gets on and very best of luck with the drumkit exam!
ICouldBe grin at your poor DH last year, bet he has learned his lesson!

hapsburg Tue 01-Nov-16 19:48:36

grin wave to other bassoon parents - one here too!

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