May 19, 2011

That was my first practical exam. I have done many pen and paper examinations in my life but hardly enough practical examinations. I have to think hard perhaps I have done sailing and canoe!

Even practice sessions with my piano accompanist were scary since I learn in group and never practiced with piano. My accompanist was very nice who also trained me for aural tests. I explained to her that it wasn’t her problem. It was due to the loud, familiar, beautiful background piano that distracted my focus.

The lady who registered me at the exam venue was friendly, my accompanist got there much earlier also tried to calm me down, that helped. There was a boy, who must be around 7, played before me. Again I was more like a father taking my son there for the exam. I felt a bit better when I was told that the examiner was an English lady. Her profile was posted on the wall and she isn’t a cellist but a pianist/educator.

I decided to do scale first, then the 3 pieces, the aural test was last. It wasn’t like a pen/paper exam so I didn’t have time to do a proper forecast as I did for my Theory exam.

Now let me guess.

Scale (Full/pass = 21/14): I did a bit better than OK, examiner was kind enough to give me a second chance for one of them so I think I’ll get 16.

Sight Reading (Full/pass = 21/14): I was given 2 lines of tune in Eb major, I should get 18.

3 pieces (Full/pass = 30/20 each): it was disastrous, I messed up 2 out of 3, tempo was out, I’ll be lucky if I get total of 60.

Aural (Full/pass = 18/12): I did pretty good, 16 is a sure bet.

My total should be near 110, anything above passing mark of 100 I’ll be relieved. I have to act as his role model.

By the way there wasn’t any opportunity to warm up (I was allowed to tune the cello) and surprisingly once I started playing I didn’t sweat that much as in my practice sessions with my accompanist. Normally it took me 30 minutes or so to warm up (or cool down), by the time I’m ready for serious business an hour has gone!

It’s a 7 weeks’ wait to know the result.

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