Ramblin, ramblin, raham….bulin!

From the “life’s little hassles” file….

Just as I was posting my last blog, I looked up and saw the last thing any weary traveler wants to see AFTER a trans-Atlantic, which is “flight cancelled” next to the last leg of your journey….

I’m a little bummed out, but it could have been worse. The earliest they could have gotten me to Tri Cities was tomorrow at 11:30. The problem was that I had a rehearsal in Tri Cities at 11, and my cello is in Pendleton, which is 70 minutes away. To get in to the airport, drive to Pendleton and back to Richland would have meant completely missing the rehearsal which is our only working rehearsal for this recital other than the run through in the hall tomorrow.


In the end, I got them to re-route me to Portland tonight and on to Pendleton at 7:30 tomorrow. I’ll make the rehearsal, but will have lost the time tonight to get reacquainted with my US cello. It’ll probably be straight in with Sheila.

Pianists change instruments all the time, but string players almost never. If pianists had to cope with intonation, they’d be a lot more neurotic than they already are (god, there’s a thought….).

Anyway, I don’t mean to whinge, but why does everything always have to come down to the wire?!?!!?!?!?

For those young conductors out there… Word to the wise- it’s just as important to know the airline schedules as your scores. The agents did not seem to know about this possibility until I told them about it….

It also seems a bit perverse to make a trip to Portland that doesn’t involve seeing any of my friends, drinking any beer with said friends, or offer the possibility of Stump Town coffee in the morning. 

Let just hope the flight tomorrow goes on time. 

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About the author

American conductor, composer and cellist Kenneth Woods is Principal Conductor of the English Symphony Orchestra, Artistic Director of the Colorado MahlerFest and cellist of the string trio Ensemble Epomeo. He records for the Avie, Somm, Nimbus, Signum, MSR and Toccata labels.

Learn about Kenneth at www.kennethwoods.net

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4 comments on “Ramblin, ramblin, raham….bulin!”

  1. rootlesscosmo

    Pianists do have to cope with intonation. Alfred Brendel advised touring pianists to carry a pared-down technician’s kit on the road, so they could adjust tuning and voicing as well.

    That’s not to say we’re not neurotic, of course.

  2. John

    I think we are all neurotic – musicians in general anyway. However, if anyone thinks Pianists don’t have to deal with intonation, then you haven’t played the practice pianos at the local U here. “mean” tone temperament indeed.

    Hope everything works out with your flights. The joys of travel in the modern world.

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