Easter Holidays and too much time off.

I was playing at a wedding today down in Staffordshire, about an hour’s drive from my house so not too bad.  The whole day went very smoothly and I got paid (yay!)

But instead of blogging about another background gig – I’m going to talk about the holidays in general.  I got a bit emotional yesterday, tears may have been involved, and I couldn’t put my finger on what was upsetting me.

I eventually came to the conclusion that it must be a number of things:

  • having lost my phone and shelled out for a new one, all the financial progress I’ve made recently has been pretty much cancelled out.
  • my  harp has a buzz 🙁 nothing serious  but it needs sorting – I’m currently waiting for a technician to get back to me on that.  Harps are so complex and have so many moving parts that occasionally these parts can vibrate against each other to make a buzzing sound when a particular note is played.  It’s not serious and it’s easily fixable but extremely annoying!
  • All my current gigs seem to be background music – yes it’s easy money but it leaves me rather unfulfilled.  My place is in an orchestra.  I’ve known this for some time now but it’s definitely time to start really pushing for this and sending emails and hopefully getting some auditions.
  • I’m scared that if all I ever do are background gigs, I’ll lose all the progress I made in my four years at the Royal Northern College of Music.  I didn’t study for all that time just to play cringe-worthy arrangements of cheesy music for people who don’t listen or care.
  • I haven’t had a harp lesson in nine months and I can definitely tell, I’m going to focus now on learning some new repertoire for an upcoming recital and resuscitating some old favourites so I feel like I can still actually play the harp with a good level of skill.

Maybe it’s just the holidays, and current lack of work, but things definitely need a push right now.  I’ve hit some sort of plateau that I haven’t experienced before.

So yes, sorry this post is decidedly less cheery than others, but this blog is about the whole picture of being a freelancer.  Hopefully over time I’ll see that the good times far outnumber the hard.

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2 Comments

  1. A friend calls the background music gigs “playing music to be ignored by.” It might pay the bills, but it doesn’t fill your musical heart. It sounds like you are not being challenged at all musically, only financially. Is it time to start preparing your repertoire for orchestral harp auditions, as well as for your recital? Any chance of getting a harp lesson? Hang in there!

    1. Thank you 🙂 Yes I have an audition and a Recital coming up so I have given myself a metaphorical kick to jump back into doing some proper practice.

      As ever, thanks for reading 🙂

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