End of Year Reflection

This year I’ve been practicing my flute playing with the intention of improving my articulation, tempo, and also breathing. I believe that I’ve effectively improved all three; I am now able to play for longer without having to take another breath (improved my embouchure), my tempo has definitely improved because I’ve been using a metronome to practice, and also my articulation has improved because I’ve put extra effort into analysing pieces along with paying attention to details. My fingering and rhythm accuracy is still slightly hazy, however, and I aim to improve that in the upcoming years.

      I believe that my knowledge of theory has improved. I can now effectively analyse and triads, seventh chords, composition, and also figured bass. However, I still have some difficulty with scales and also transposition. I will aim to practice my transposition and also scales. I can do so by using online sites, and also practicing for an upcoming ABRSM theory exam.

      All of this boils down to how I have approached the traits desired for an IB learner, according to the IB Learner Profile. I have displayed the traits of an inquirer and also a risk taker throughout the year.

     As an Inquirer, I have sought to learn more information, newer skills, and a better understanding of what it means to be a musician throughout the year with the intention of becoming better at music, and throughout this process I believe that I have utilised the skills expected of an inquirer to accomplish this goal. The IB define an Inquirer as follows; “We nurture our curiosity, developing skills for inquiry and research. We know how to learn independently and with others. We learn with enthusiasm and sustain our love of learning throughout life” (IBO). I have developed my skills through music, I worked effectively both with others (presentations) and also alone (composition, theory test), and I have done so with enthusiasm because of my love of learning.

     As a risk taker, I have approached challenges with determination and grit because I was determined to achieve them, however also took into of the effort. I was resilient in the face of challenges, and worked my hardest to acquire the skills I wished to gain, and also took full advantage of the resources given to me. The IB define a risk taker as follows; “We approach uncertainty with forethought and determination; we work independently and cooperatively to explore new ideas and innovative strategies. We are resourceful and resilient in the face of challenges and change” (IBO). I approached musical aspects that I knew might be hard, and yet I still tried my hardest.

To conclude, I have improved a lot throughout this year, and I plan on continuing to improve my theory and playing.

Test

Final Stella by Starlight – Flute Jazz Solo

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I found that in my previous solo some of the notes clashed with one another, so I tried to edit that. Along with this I tried to add some variation in rhythm however after my live playing Mr Taitoko suggested more variation because although I included my 7>3 resolutions, they were too simplistic and my solo would’ve benefited with some variation and other notes.

Russian Dance – Line 65

I was satisfied with my overall grade, however I think I could’ve improved my grade if I had improved my breathing, connection, and tempo.

My breathing can be improved for the future by improving my lung capacity (breathing exercises, daily practice) and also practicing my embouchure. I have trouble with keeping my embouchure strong, and sometimes go over the mouthpiece and that limits my technique.

I could improve my connection by working on tonguing the notes. I think I needed to practice this piece a bit more. Also, if I were to practice the higher notes, I’d be able to connect them more easily. Right now, my high notes are a bit raspy, making them harder to perfect.

My tempo was a bit slow for the song. I feel as though I should’ve sped up the piece a bit, as it was a Russian dance and one main aspect of a stereotypical “Russian” song is the rapid tempo at which it is played. I think I was capable of playing quicker, however I played slower so that I could articulate the notes better, as I find that if you play faster it is harder to discern between staccato 8th notes and unaccented 8th notes, so I thought that by playing slower I could make the difference between the two in my piece more obvious. However, I played it too slow which made it untrue to its Russian origin