May 20th, 2008


Playing along

I have a bit of a dilemma. It's a bit of a long rambly explanation, sorry.

At the beginning of this term I was asked if I'd like to play violin in Hertford College Orchestra, who would be playing Wagner's Siegfried-Idyll, Haydn's Surprise Symphony, and Britten's Simple Symphony. Collapse )

Anyway. The point is I'm not enjoying it at all; I don't think anybody else is enjoying it either; and the music sounds appalling because there just isn't enough sound there -- honestly, even Haydn doesn't sound convincing with only a dozen people, and Wagner is just out of the question. Okay, maybe if you had a dozen members of the LSO you could carry it off; but, really, it's not like that.

So my instinct is to say "This is not doing me or anybody else any good" and resign now, with 2 rehearsals to go before the concert. HOWEVER: having missed two rehearsals I feel like I have no moral high-ground from which to complain about poor attendance, and it would be hypocritical to cite that as a reason for wanting to give up. (But I did warn them before even joining, and they could quite reasonably have said "no, sorry, not good enough" when I did so; but they may not have been confident enough to say that to a Grown-Up; but that's not my fault!) And if I resign, they will be even worse off than they are now, and I'd feel like I was letting them down. (But that may be a good thing in a way, as it might either make them make more effort to round up their fellow students or push them into cutting their losses and saving everybody a lot of stress and disappointment -- a rubbish concert isn't going to benefit anybody, really.) ALSO I worry that my judgement is being coloured by the fact that I am fairly busy at the moment and honestly, there are more interesting things that I could be doing with my time. But half of my irritation with the bad attendance is that lots of people have made a commitment and then not made good on that, and if I do the same, I'm Part Of The Problem (but at least I'd be telling them openly rather than just Not Turning Up). And ye-es, I could just claim that I had to stop because of work commitments and duck the issue altogether, because as a Grown-Up I have that get-out-of-jail-free card, but that really wouldn't be right.

And if I don't do something soon it really will be too last-minute to drop out; but I fear it's already too late to turn this into a good performance, which paradoxically may mean it's already too late to drop out and the only option now is to grit my teeth and live with the fact that we're going to have another 6 hours or so of miserable rehearsal and then look a bit stupid in public for a couple of hours (but hey, it's not my friends and classmates who'll be watching), and maybe that will make people realise why it's important to turn up to rehearsals.

ALSO (meta-angst) I feel like I'm being so bloody pompous in trying to ascribe so much moral weight to something which is so trivial in the grand scheme of things, but I do think of things in these terms, and even trivial choices are still choices. I blame the Chalet School for this attitude, incidentally.

So, er, your advice and thoughts welcomed...