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Surface Drifts

(first 60-minute session)

Warmup – I started early this morning, so I had to do a long warmup (about 20-minutes) of DV, SI, SA exercises. My focus was feeling the rotation around my spine when playing alternating strokes, and feeling a full lower back and abdomen.

As an aside, I never really articulate the exact exercises that I am doing each day (who has time for that?!). Anyway, they are mostly made up on the spot, but at times are derivative of exercises from L.H. Stevens’ Method of Movement book. I do this because I want to work technical issues specifically related to the pieces I am working on, and because I really don’t want to do the exact same thing every day. I also use this time to improvise chord progressions, melodies, and Steve Reich-like sounds on the marimba.

Mm. 60-92 – worked with DV block chords throughout, picking up tempo each time, and really focusing on getting the balance of dynamics correct

(second 60-minute session)

Mm. 60-92 – worked through with DV block chords at 70bpm, and 80bpm; then, worked DV alternating chords at 80bpm. I have decided to really work the interpretation with the rolls played with DV alternating only when both hands are rolling, blocking chord hand alone -as 16th notes- when there is a line in the other hand. The difficulty with this is transitioning from one to the other without noticeable change in roll texture; and, the issue is really more about where my ear is, not the technical challenge. So, while playing the DV alternating rolls, I gradually shift my ear to hear the hand that will be playing the upcoming DV block chords to hear them as 16ths notes… this allows the piece to breathe more freely. I don’t have/want to maintain the same exact roll speed throughout, so this will work.

Mm. 93-end – read through 1x with DV block chords throughout (had a bit of tension, so took a moment to stretch and realign); worked through applying the same roll concept described above at 80bpm, and again focus on balance/dynamics

Mm. 60-end – read through one time… these measures take a lot of endurance to pull off!

Mm. 1-24 – played through a few times, from memory

5s – played through a few times, from memory (hands together and separate)

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