The Unexpected Present

Ready For The Next Stage On Stage

Yuri First rehearsal

There are many stages in our lives. We finally went through the Second Act with quite the cliffhanger of not knowing what will happen to how will it all end? We’re coming to the Third Act with Yuri back in the saddle again playing fiddle and going to a live rehearsal with members of Mostly Jazz Trio.

First and foremost, Yuri spent the month preparing himself mentally. “What’s the point? Why am I still doing this?” he asks (he’s a Gemini so there’s an ongoing conversation with himself). The answer comes back to him emphatically and without a doubt– “because I love it and it’s the only thing I ever wanted to do. I love doing it. I love making music.”

Overcoming the fear of can I do this again, Yuri did his homework by relearning everything he knew he can do. With determination and disciplined practicing, he will be doing it again. It took a while to get started. His five-string electric violin had a place next to the dining/work table for a long time without being picked up.

He would give it long looks of yearning desire before going back to relearning parts in his mind. When it is finally is cradled in his arms, with him plucking the Mongolian horsehair strings, I knew it won’t be long before he works the bow. It’s quite the challenge physically.

Yuri works hard to get his strength back in his forearm muscles. Dexterity, intonation, interpretation, more fringe fluidity, and muscle finesse. Creativity, passion, getting into the groove aligns with the physical and mental effort. He has the drive to work on more, starting early in the morning, taking short breaks, and staying on track during the rest of the day. I keep my own focus on the work I’m doing but can’t help marveling at the tone getting better every day he practices.

I love that Yuri’s voice is coming back, too. He’s still cautious not to over-strain but I hear that richness in timbre making its way to the forefront. Musically sounding character and quality of his range going from warm-toned tenor– so distinctive in its pitch and intensity. The extraordinary ability for harmony always has me going.

February 17 is a day to remember. Yuri’s first live rehearsal with the band, good people who are among the many keeping us in their prayers and good wishes, surrounding us with tremendous support. It’s been two long years since the coronavirus slipped into our lives and lockdown had everyone shut-in for most of 2020. It is almost a year in March 2021 when we faced a most challenging year. If I didn’t write what happened, no one would believe what we have gone through. But here we are. This day will always be remembered as a joyous one. I will be doing the Snoopy happy dance.

After a long day still high on the adrenalin and neurotransmitter, dopamine, and with a glass of wine in hand, we discuss what he has to do to get back to where he was before a year ago. Yuri is on fire. He is ready for the next stage, being on stage, Third Act.

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