What a difference three years can make. It is roughly that long since I first made a trumpet sextet version of this little arrangement, which later became the version that Manger Musikklag performed so beautifully last Sunday evening: Rehearsing this piece with the band transported me back to a difficult period. When it was written, … Continue reading I know in heaven, a castle
A new dawn begins in Manger Musikklag, one of Norway's oldest and most successful brass bands. I'm very privileged and honoured that they've chosen to appoint me as their new principal cornet, with several other major changes in place. This opportunity brings me to Bergen, an incredibly beautiful city with a strong cultural scene. Read … Continue reading Manger Musikklag: a new dawn
It's been over two years since I posted on this blog, and so an overhaul of this online professional portfolio has been somewhat overdue. There's been a few tweaks to represent current activities timed with a recent relocation to Bergen. Notably, a new professional focus on cornet, and graphic design services being offered. It's been two years, because in that time I have been attempting to adapt to a new culture, one in which it seems talking about one's self in public is deeply frowned upon. Since arriving in Norway, the cultural differences have fascinated more than frustrated me. I have learned about 'The law of jante' or 'janteloven' being a concept embedded into Scandinavian societies. It is a subtle yet strong attitude that bonds people together with noticeable contrast to attitudes of UK society. Anyone unfamiliar with it can read about it here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Law_of_Jante At first I thought it was some sort of folk tale, and not to be taken too seriously. Maybe not so literally perhaps these days, but there is undoubtably some sort of adherence to these principles that holds Scandinavian communities together. I respect and admire that enormously, as do Norwegians genuinely respect each other, the land they live on and the cities they share. However, it does present me with some serious head scratching. How to talk one's self up professionally in order to gain employment without in fact talking about one's self at all?! Discuss!!
"Use your diaphragm!" ...said a brass or vocal teacher, somewhere, always. The response from the student; nearly always puzzled, if not nodding quietly to mask confusion and/or risk of suggested ignorance. This well used phrase may be yielding results from some students. Yet, I don't know of anyone that I have met who can knowingly … Continue reading The diaphragm delusion