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  • Writer's pictureCraig Birchfield

Allegro’s Greatest Hits Part 1

I have been writing our Allegro Violin music blog for several years. I typically spend several hours writing each blog piece and I try to make the entries informative and entertaining. I thought that it might be fun to go back and review some of our previous entries and hit some high points. These are all under the Music Blog tab if your interest is piqued by the teasers here. Here is a list of some of our posts from the last 12 months.

Between the Flags and Dots. I examine the two worlds of music: a musician playing music composed by others and composition/improvisation by the musician. Here is a quote:

I think that a balanced and holistic approach to music is best. To tap into the wealth of great historic music requires good reading skills but I think that often ear and theory training are given a back seat in the traditional approach. Remember that the classical masters that we so revere were also geniuses at theory and improvisation and had great ears but once you write down an improvisation it becomes sheet music.

A Tale of Five Concerts I reviewed concerts that I had attended in the winter season. Three of special note were those by Oregon Symphony violinist Greg Ewer’s eclectic chamber group 45th parallel (every Portland music lover should hear one of their concerts), the spectacular annual Gospel Christmas celebration at the Snitz and the recent solo performance in Portland of Yo-Yo Ma. I also share an interesting and heart-warming anecdote about this last concert and Yo-Yo Ma.

Top 10 Reasons Children Should Learn an Instrument

It is just a brief review of the positive things we’ve learned in the last 20 years about the value of a musical education but I wish that it was required reading by every parent of a small child. Aerobics for the brain, self-confidence, social skills, self-motivation, math and science capacity, are just a few of the legion of benefits if you give you child the gift of music.

What Is Your Motivation

This is another brief food-for-thought article that examines why we play music and why we attempt to improve our musical ability. Is it about self-expression? The Kudos and respect of other musicians? Communication with your audience? See if you agree with some of my concusions.

The Beauty We Miss

Some of you are probably familiar witht the dramatic Josh Bell experiment concerning the percieved value of music performance. If not, it is an eye opener and I won’t divulge it here. You have to read the two paragraph post I wrote. The implications apply to many areas of our life, not just music.

Violin and Orchestra Quotes, Jokes and Quips

This post is purely for the entertainment value of it. I’ve collected a cashe’ of amusing anecdotes and quotes concerning the greatest musicians of the past and mixed in a few either good or bad musical jokes, depending on your taste. Enjoy!

Keep Practicing,


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