1. I owe Our Lord, through his Mother and St. Cecilia, a really huge vote of thanks! I had my sophomore candidacy, a sort of progress report/mid-major checkup, yesterday afternoon. For me, (not everyone else), this doubled as a re-audition to switch from the Bachelor of Arts in Music, with piano emphasis, to the Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance, a much more performance-oriented major, as evidenced by the title. I had attempted this last year and been told, "Give it another year." I did, practicing, listening and learning; and this time, I played my Mozart concerto (the Concerto in A Major, K. 414) and my wonderful Bach Fugue in F Major (from the Well-Tempered Clavier Volume II.), and after answering a few questions about grades, what I wanted to do with my major, and such, I went out and waited (rather tense, but less so than I'd thought I would be), listening futilely to the faint murmur of voices within the recital hall. My teacher whispered me that I had passed, entre nous, but the official notice came from our department chair, Dr. Carter, this afternoon, and I didn't have to pretend my delight, despite its being no surprise - I couldn't keep my most brilliant smile off my face! Two years of hard work have paid off - Laus Deo!
2. In contrast to the delight of the first take, my three-year old sister has not been well... she had her tonsils out about two weeks ago, and Tuesday the cut re-opened and she lost a lot of blood. She spent Wednesday in the hospital, came home yesterday morning and that very afternoon was bleeding again... so now she is back at Children's till Sunday. Prayers would be hugely appreciated, though the last news is that she was doing okay.
3. The school-year is over. I am now officially a junior. It feels so weird... it doesn't seem like two years ago that I was introducing myself to Professor Chamberlin, who registered me for my first semester and taught me two semesters of theory this year... wow, two years are short!
4. Somebody introduced me to a marvelous poem by G. K. Chesterton, Gloria in Profundis. A must read!
5. This afternoon was the honors ceremony for the whole College of Fine Arts. Quite a few of my dear friends at college are graduating with honors this year, and three of five performances were theirs. It spoke well for the Music Department! The first performance, following the Dean's introduction, was by one of our piano performance majors, who, with the aid of one of the junior piano-majors, gave a spectacular performance of his own two-piano arrangement of Philip Glass' Rubric, from Glassworks. I had not heard the original chamber piece before (I am no lover of minimalism), but on listening to the beginning of it tonight in original form, I like Michael's version much better! I fell in love once again with Elisabeth's blazing rendition of the Prokofiev Toccata, Op. 11, and Alyssa's Choro by Villa-Lobos was every bit as splendid as I remembered it from her senior recital and the departmental-honors ceremony. At the end I found tears rising to my eyes... Shakespeare was wrong. Parting is no sweet sorrow.
6. Tonight I was introduced to a new brand of ice cream, Blue Sky, made here in St. Louis. It's excellent - made by a nitrogen-freezing process, I was told. Somewhat expensive but absolutely delicious!
7. This summer will bring a new adventure - house-hunting for the school year! My brother will be staying here in St. Louis with me (he at WashU, I at Webster), and we will be looking for some comfy little apartment near my university (as he drives and I don't), and settle in together for the school year. It will be very different living without the family, but it should be fun!