Scales

I always liked scales. I’m probably not particularly good at them but never had a problem me and them. None of this presumption of hatred I always saw them as a welcome relief from the sometimes intense playing of a piece. I think I liked them because they’re black and white there is a right and wrong answer, it’s just something to follow and remember, no strings attached, just memorise. No label stamped on them telling you what emotion to invoke. They don’t get a piece of my heart scales just my brain and I’m more than happy to use that wherever I can, to help anything really. And be judged on it. Because it’s not personal, there’s nothing about YOU attached to it, some randomer (probably a very important person that I should know and probably do but can’t think right now, I think it’s quite long winded) made them up a loooong time ago, we’re just following orders. And although that may be said about all ‘classical’ or written down music, there’s not an inch of me that feels like that or is willing to accept it because I create the sound, it’s mine, coming from meee or yoooou it’s yours your making it. No one on earth is going to play that piece how you do, never exactly. You might play a scale a bit out of tune but it’s just a pattern in the end, we’re all in the same boat, everyone plays the same scale the same all over the world, aww that’s a nice thought 🙂

A piece is personal.
Scales are impersonal.

That might not make sense and you might not agree but apparently that’s how my brain works.

I don’t care or feel bad for doing it wrong because there’s no disputing it is, I know I did it wrong or right. And when you don’t care about something it makes it much easier to tackle. Life gets very hard when you care about absolutely everything, don’t try, it won’t do you any good, let go. With a piece judgement is passed by by the truck load coming from every unexplored angle about things you’d never even consider because no one ever thinks the same, it’s all interpretation, there is no right or wrong in music, in doing something you love and enjoy and fair enough, good for you, enjoy it.

But sometimes people think there is an exact right or wrong and that’s what fucks up ‘classical’ music.

Playing a piece you have your heart on your sleeve, you are naked, venerable bearing your emotions and opening up the varied and beautiful passions that live inside you. Sit, watch, stare and judge my very personal creation of music. My enjoyment in life. I love the cello. It’s given me so much. Please don’t hate or think bad of us.

Scales are just there. Learn this. That’s done. Great.

A piece is a lifetime of learning, discovering and creating… And for me never ending, there is ALWAYS something to perfect.

So scales – lovely jubbly 🙂

Our Adventure – Musiquality

I was talking about this trip to a lecturer the other day and he said ‘I think it sounds like the most amazing thing I’ve ever heard of a group of students doing…’ This made me blush because it makes me so incredibly proud and happy knowing I’m part of something that someone thinks is amazing 🙂

It is effortless for me to feel how brilliant this whole project is because I am in it but getting the recognition from someone else who is completely outside the project (and who I really respect) made everything all the more real, allowing and backing up my emotions around it. It’s always nice to get that reminder – you are allowed and it’s ok for you to feel this way about something.

I cherish music unconditionally and the cello is as much a part of me as the colour of my eyes. Music is the blood in my veins – if it didn’t exist neither would I. I am forever indebted to it for what it’s given me…

My mind has always aspired to teach, almost as if I had no control over that at all. More than a desire, like a mundane undercurrent instinct that is completely essential to my life. Like something you feel like you’ve always known and can’t remember when or if you ever learnt it.

To teach wasn’t ever a specific conscious decision, just simply is and always has been my future 🙂

How brilliant or ridiculous does this completely true statement sound… ‘We are fundraising our way to America’. Seeing the different reactions in people has been hilarious. From shock and doubt to wonder, amazement and interest… This is what we are doing and it is astonishing.

(I hope I explain this correctly because I may not…)

We are calling this project ‘Musiquality’ because we hope to bring quality of learning and quality of experience through music too others…

We are flying to California from the UK on the 20th of May and returning on the 28th. Our trip includes us staying in Yosemite National Park for three nights and four days. I absolutely adore the outdoors and I cannot really imagine a more exciting prospect.

The biggest reason for our trip is to collaborate with students from Rigetti High School in Santa Maria. We want to help them realise their goals… What we have to offer and what we will openly give is our musical knowledge. We are recording an album with them of a wide variety of music inspired by our interactions and the surroundings of where they are – between the sea and the edge of Yosemite National Park. And among some other things we intend to teach them some folk songs…

I’m not entirely sure about everyone else but I’m going to say I want to help them any way possible really. I want to listen to them and try an encourage any of their ideas and goals, because we know sometimes when helping a certain aspect of your life it has a knock on effect to helping another. I can’t wait, what an experience 🙂

This trip was ignited and created by a few wonderful people… Our lecturer Laura Ritchie has made/is making this possible. I remember the first week at university we had an introduction talk and we were put in the class Laura was talking too… I can’t actually remember what exactly she was talking about (general uni things) and I’m not very good at paying attention but all I remember thinking the whole time was that all I reeeally wanted to do was just put my hand up and shout out ‘can’t you teach me the cello please!??’ (I was so close too but my friend stopped me more than once reminding me we were going to be here for four years and first impressions and all…). It was the care I felt radiating from her whole demeanour for what she was talking about that instantly engaged and grasped my own passion and need for learning. I was not aware about people like this and was thoroughly enthralled. For someone to so immediately (within minutes) inspire something inside someone else they have to be pretty stunning 🙂

It takes someone like Laura to make such an epic journey happen by believing in the first place. And have the zest to thoroughly pursue it.

Thank you.

The other main person involved is David Preston, a teacher at the high school we are going to and I’ve obviously never met him but he seems to be quite an incredible individual. We have a few nights of our trip with nowhere to stay so David has said we can stay with him! Thank you! Also another fundraising idea is to have a concert when we get there and David has offered his house again – Thank you again 🙂

This simply would not have happened without Laura and David…

So… Fundraising! 😀

We are doing absolutely everything within in our power and imagination which includes, bake sales, cooking, busking, holding events, concerts, a raffle… We’ve have also offered cleaning and gardening but no one has taken us up on that yet which is a shame since I love gardening/digging in the mud 🙂 I would and will actually do just about anything (within rational reason haha) to raise the money for us to get there.

I have written to about 25 companies asking for a donation and to all the schools I’ve attended to see if they could help but haven’t had any luck with that yet…

Me and Freya (my friend/flat mate who’s going as well) decided to launch a little food thing called… ‘Come and Spa-gett it!’ 😀

            IMGP0056                 IMGP0057
Basically I make loads of spaghetti bolognese and ask our friends for donations, we’ve also made soup and a vegan bean wrap…

Laura has lent us her massive saucepans and an amazing cooker thing from her house, which we’re taking care of! Thank you! 🙂 This is the cooker going on holiday to IzzI n Freya’s haha 🙂

                                                             photo

Oh and I made 48 cupcakes a few days ago for one of our bake sales! 😀 An improvement from last time I think! Haha…

                                             IMGP0059

I can describe to you all day, till the cows come home about how brilliant this project is 🙂

It is life changing…

And the fundraising, don’t get me wrong I am having a great time and seriously enjoying myself… But it is bloody hard work…

It’s ok for me because I’m always willingly and blindly put allll my effort into everything, I can’t actually fathom any other way to carry out my life, it’s not negotiable. I will always try my very very best, using all my mental and physical capacity and more if I can squeeze it in 🙂 At the moment sometimes I go to sleep thinking about this project and then wake up finishing my sentence or thought process about it…

Laura personally brought our plane tickets on her credit card which is just mental… Which we seriously need to pay back as soon as we can!! For all her effort as well so much more thanks is needed than I could ever express…

The bottom line is – we do actually need money. Absolutely any ideas, no matter how small or insignificant you might think they are I am telling you they will be greatly appreciated 🙂

For someone who got the internet/a computer at 20 (just turned 23) this whole project has all been a bit of a slap of technology but I am trying very hard to keep up and I’m learning about what feels like a hundred things a week about it. I can’t deny or ignore the internet/technology because it’s definitely quite an established and ongoing fundamental aspect of society. And if you can’t deny something I suppose you may as well embrace it 🙂

Is it important to have experiences that challenge or maybe reaffirm your values, skills and personal opinions?

I’m in the beginning of an experience that’s doing all this and it’s brilliant…

One way to really ‘learn about yourself’ is to actually question everything you believe, can you make an argument for every one of your opinions? Do you need too? Not always. But it’s very interesting to see how you go.

Last week I was sadly proven two massive things I do not want to believe. You know when you come so far in telling yourself that’s not how you should think and then someone just rips you back to your maybe naïve but completely justified in your own eyes opinion. I know you shouldn’t let people affect you but sometimes for me at least that is impossible.

You know when you’re just going through life and your beliefs are almost uncontrollably moulded for you out of your own experiences. It takes effort, understanding and actual acknowledgement to break the chain in your thought process to change your mind set and sometimes that is just completely unreachable.

I’d like to say your given more beliefs and opinions by your good experiences but for me I think it’s definitely more the bad ones because maybe you learn more from them because they drastically change you more rather than enhancing something nice that was already inside, I’m not sure…

One of the situations was much more complicated than the other but I will be thinking on them for a long time and probably with the more understanding I get, looking at both sides of the story I will come to different conclusions throughout life.

The reason I said all that is because one of those situations directly came from this remarkable project that we are undertaking. I know the experience of realising this project and the project itself will push and expand many of my skills, attributes and ideas, I can feel it’s already begun…

While getting ready to go out to give my fundraisings letters to coffee shops I got all confused about my intentions of how I wanted to come across, shall I try and dress smartly so I look important or like a hobo so they’re more inclined to want to help, I had no idea so I just wore my normal clothes which I hope is somewhere in between haha. Then I picked up my cover up and got confused about my morals, why am I wearing this? So people don’t think I’ve got acne but why does that matter and what does that entail, what do I think that makes people think – I’m dirty or societally ugly and why do I care about that and if I do wear it what will people think then that I’m societally prettier or that I’m shallow enough to care, I don’t know, I got so confused so I just ran out the house haha…

The first place I went:
‘Hello, may I give you this letter please?’
‘Of course of course!’ she excitedly starts to open it ‘yes yes would you be looking for full or part time’ I almost wanted to just agree and accept not to see her disappointment in my words –
‘Oh it’s something else’ … ‘Oh OK then…’
Well if all else fails think I’ve got a job there haha…

While slowly (lovely reading week) strolling round town I was noting what shops I could target next and going through in my head was how can I make these companies relevant to my situation… I was looking at Jones shoe shop imagining talking to one of their employers saying ‘oh don’t you sell nice shoes – can I have some money to go to America please’ haha… I also really have to think I do live in this town and I need to not go in places that I frequently use so they don’t start to think ‘oh look there’s that mad woman asking us for money again don’t serve her’ haha… Maybe I need to wear a disguise? 😀 haha…

I’m sorry it must be really annoying I finish most things with hahaha… It’s just most things really do make me laugh 🙂

Before sending out about million emails to a wide variety of companies I had to make a more grown up email address, since I was going to be writing to lots of important people I thought they wouldn’t take fizzyizzi very seriously haha… My goal is to do one company a day…

I don’t believe many companies will really give out anything but I am sooo interested and excited to see what companies reply and what they will say…

It’s such an exciting and amazing project and I still can’t actually believe it’s happening…

This whole experience is going to push all our skills, including my work ethic because we’re all busy with so many ‘musts’ every hour is precious but if you want to make the time you can do anything really. It’s very important to try and make time for the things you enjoy, for me right now that’s writing on here and raising money for our project, if I didn’t really enjoy it I wouldn’t do it or at least put half the effort in. I’m letting this project engulf me because I love all its prospects. Someone told me a saying the other day ‘always ask a busy person to get something done’ it sounds funny but I think it’s true 🙂

Mad Sparkle Pie :D

Photo 14-02-2015 21 31 29I made up the title of this pudding just as a metaphor or a concept or something when I was trying to explain loads of things at once and couldn’t put together the words I meant (that’s an extremely interesting thing/idea something coming out of stupidity rather than intelligence – cool). I was trying to say something along the lines of madness is very much needed, a spark of madness only colours our lives, makes it more interesting, enhances it. Kate Bush sings this point beautifully in the touchingly atmospheric song ‘Nocturn’ (makes me want to fly/float in a night’s sky, listen and you’ll see) – ‘We tire of the city… We tire of it all… We long for… [a few powerful pauses] just that… [then with incredible conviction within the word] something… moooore…’

But what I originally said was life would be so boring without a slice of mad sparkle pie every now and again hahahaha…

Then since it was Valentines and he was MAKING(!?) pasta out of flour and stuff I thought I probably should make an effort as well! And what better way but to create an abstract idea, was very fun 🙂

Brilliant things wouldn’t happen without a few mad people. We’ve got to be a bit mad to imagine idealistic situations/inventions. If we didn’t long for that something more and push the boundaries how would we advance? Who wants to follow the normal, straight path noooo that would be silly – I want to run off and pick some flowers 😀

Innovation is sparked by a moment of madness in the mind. Of course sometimes it’ll be too much but if you didn’t go over the line I don’t think you could really understand/control and enjoy being on the line. I was lucky enough to have a very good driving instructor and because I was an extremely anxious learner, crying, too nervous to go very fast he once made me drive about 100mph down this completely empty road to make me understand and feel comfortable and in control at the speed limit – which was 60mph. This (if a bit mad) completely worked and from then on I honestly feel perfectly fine driving at any speed. I had to feel like I had no control before I gained it. I love it when you find things in life that exactly (not always exactly haha) explain what you mean 🙂

Everyone should imagine and create their own! 😀 I almost feel bad for making it because this pudding is only a representation of what your Mad Sparkle Pie is – a place, a person, an idea…

Just do it! Eat the Mad Sparkle Pie! Will do you good 🙂 Maybe not the hips though haha…

Why is describing yourself so hard…

I’ve just realised my partner has written on the ‘About IzzI’ thing above. When I worked out how to change it I didn’t have the heart too because I am so flattered, I want to keep it haha. It’s so easy to find the good things you see in everyone else but when it’s about yourself… Nope. I want to describe myself as a Cellist but I just don’t quite believe it. It’s too a big a title, it describes so many people I look up too. When people say ‘…so what do you do?’ I have always said ‘oh I play the cello’ because cellist sounds important like an accomplishment whereas just playing something is implying I’m in the process of trying. It’s like when you introduce a piece you’re playing in a performance I always feel like saying ‘I’m going to try and play Bach’s…’ because as soon as you say ‘try’ you immediately make it OK to fail. That is terrible, people really shouldn’t say try. But it’s just so easy to say/think you’re going to fail because then you’re not as disappointed if you do…

That is such a bad thing to say and I would NEVER let anyone believe they were going to fail, at anything but it’s OK for me I think that. Yep, haha. That is weird.

A cellist also sounds like a performer and I’ve never had that drive to be a soloist. Can you be a (instrumental/vocal) teacher without being a performer, maybe, but would it be better if you were? How can you drive people to share their playing/music when you don’t want to yourself?

The whole performer- teacher debate is massive…
Can you be completely one without the other? Have you had teachers where you’ve thought yeah you’re more a performer. Why though? How do they show that?

Do the best performers make the best teachers? You would think logically that would be true but it definitely isn’t. Is it? Is that question more obvious for people inside or outside the music world? Surely if you see someone doing something extremely well you’d assume they could teach it.

Why can some people explain better than others, is it just down to the desire to teach? And it’s only the people that don’t want to but just end up teaching that make not as affective teachers. As all I’ve ever wanted to do is teach I find it hard to understand not wanting to share your skills to help someone else.

My words are not really justified since I am not a teacher (yet!) and only come from someone who wants to be.

Baking ourselves to America…

One of our fundraising ideas is holding cake sales so we decided to start practising! I enjoy cooking a lot but somehow have managed to get to nearly 23 and have never made a cake… Lets have a bash 😀

Featured image

I did not realise the trials! Injuries…

Featured image

Is that what it’s suppose to look like…? Ah well throw it in…

Featured image

Chop off the charcoal hahahahaha…

Featured image

CAKE 😀 I think… This is the best picture ever 🙂

Featured image

Well at least it tastes fine – ish haha.

Featured image

Thanks Freya for baking with me and for taking all the photos, sorry you now have to eat loads of dodgy cake hahahahahah. We probably need more ideas… But that was sooo much fun 🙂