It’s Thursday, and that means tonight is a rehearsal for the Oregon Tuba Associations’ Ensemble, which I recently joined. For the first time in several years, I’m playing the euphonium again on a consistent basis. And I’m having a blast.
I started out by playing with a community wind band, which was fun, but the skill level was quite low. The Tuba/Euph group is very different; their skill level is much higher. I’ve really been challenged and have put in some time practicing. I’ve also pulled out many of my old euphonium solos and have been playing through those. One of these days I’ll finally master Arban’s Carnival of Venice.
I’m not sure how it happened, but I feel like I’m a much better musician now than I was when I was actually studying euphonium as a student in college. I feel like I have a much deeper understanding of the music. I feel like I have a better understanding of the euphonium as an instrument. I just feel much more comfortable playing. Maybe it’s just a matter of being a more mature person now. Many things that my instructor taught make a lot more sense than they did back then.
Playing with the group has been a very positive experience so far, and I can’t wait for Tuba Christmas. I’ve actually never participated in it, and this year I’ll be able to, though they call it something different out here. I’m really looking forward to it!