We have concluded our first workshop on Abdelazer with the excellent young musicians of the Qatar Music Academy. The children tackled the parts with skill perseverance and worked straight through two hours without a break – for which I apologise – the time went so quickly, we completely forgot to stop. After a selection of our warm up activities, including Zip Zap Boing but not including the internationally renowned Jamie Bradley’s Game, which we may do tomorrow, we settled down to rehearse under Paul Sherman’s able direction. Neyire and I took small groups away from time to time to practice negotiation of tricky corners in the music. The final run through of the evening was extremely satisfying and was captured on video, with exceptional camera skill, that would be mine and it will be a miracle if it is true; the clip will be appear somewhere in the blogosphere in the very near future. We thoroughly enjoyed the two hours and hope the children from QMA did too and will sleep well tonight. I look forward to continuing tomorrow.
Meanwhile the rest of the English Chamber Orchestra has been held up in Heathrow by heavy fog conditions – gof – gof – gof. It is now half past midnight and there is no news of their having landed. Fingers crossed it will not be long and that when they finally check in. The sight of the vast stone bowl filled with orchid plants in the fountain, surrounded by flickering candles will, I expect, soothe weary spirits and assist the passage to bed in readiness for tomorrow’s activities.