Sunday, August 7

Down with the flu.

The flu virus has eventually gotten the better of me after weeks of stress, impromper meals and a lack of sleep. I'm recovering though - thanks to a very helpful dosage of antibiotics and long hours of peaceful sleep over the past weekend. Not forgetting watching my diet carefully - no fried, oily, spicy or cold food.

You know, sometimes the modules we take in polytechnic aren't that necessary. Stuff like Character Development that waste our time over issues like Case Studies and Community Involvement Projects (CIP). As for CIP (we have to fulfil 8 hours), we barely have time to help ourselves, much less the community. They say it's "community before self" - even at our own health's expense? Those precious 8 hours could have been better spent brushing up on our academic studies. Stuff like Innovation, Design & Enterprise in Action (IDEA) as well. Totally a waste of time where we have to brainstorm for a new innovative product and go through the processes of designing, promoting and marketing it. Hell-o, we're neither Mechanical nor Engineering nor Business students but Music & Audio Technology students - so what on EARTH are we doing in a module like that?!

You know how the competition's like when many people in the course turn out to be audiophiles or music freaks. People with Diplomas in Piano (Practical) and ABRSM Theory Grade 8 and stuff of the like. And I only have a crappy Yamaha Electone Organ Grade 7 (it's inverted - from Grade 13 to 1 - Grade 1's the highest) and ABRSM Theory Grade 4. I took the contemporary approach to learning music - unlike the majority who took the classical (piano) approach.

In our module Musicianship, we learn basic keyboard skills, theory and composition. Unfortunately for me, they're taking the classical approach as well - the unfamiliar path that I had rarely tread on. So in the first few weeks of school, they were talking about scales, arpeggios and chromatics. OK fine, I still can understand a bit of that. Then came our assignment - we had to write an ETUDE!! I was like - what on EARTH is that?? (It's actually a technical study to improve your keyboard skills.) And my fellow piano peeps were going on about dead composers (?), Hanon exercises (??), thirds (???), split chromatics (????), nocturnes (?!?!?!)... you get the idea. Pardon me but I NEVER had to do scales/arpeggios/thirds/chromatics/etc. on my electone organ - which - by the way, does not even have sufficient keys to perform these exercises fully. However, I am slowly trying to pick up the trades of classical piano, practising as best as I can on my double-keyboard-layered organ.

And as soon as I brush up on my music theory after more than 5 years' of musical decomposition, I'll hope to start on formal music lessons again and finish my Electone Organ Grades 6-1 (professional teachers' grades!) and ABRSM Grade 5 (and progressively on to Grade 8). I'll see if I have time in the future to double up with an ABRSM Piano Grade as well. Slowly, but surely - press on my fingers! ;)

P.S. Happy 40th birthday Singapore!


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