It's official: In about five and a half weeks I will have to get up Entirely Too Early and drive downtown with my clarinet, for a rendezvous with destiny.
Or, at least, a rendezvous with a piano accompanist and a Royal Conservatory examiner. Yes, folks... Here comes the dreaded Grade 4 practical exam.
(Not bad for someone who's only played clarinet for a bit under three years, mind you...)
It's been an interesting year of preparation, full of Random Equipment Malfunctions. Most of these have involved a new ligature, a Bonade inverted that insisted on slipping off the mouthpiece.
Until a couple of weeks ago, when I decided enough was enough. I took a small piece of #400 wet-dry sandpaper and applied it vigorously to the inside surface of the ligature. Sanded down the high-gloss finish on the metal, roughing it up eeee...ver so slightly. Now, when I set a reed, it stays put.
A definite advantage when one is trying to actually play something.