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8 May 2018, 11:35
Music and Meetings  Closed 
Maeve led Lucien and Mia up to the rehearsal room. They had already taken a trip to the owlery.

Now, they were warming up their instruments to play for one another.

Maeve's fingers danced across the keys as she played song after song. Her fingers were already starting to ache, but she loved the ache of playing. It meant to her that she was doing well.

"Alright, Mia, Lu, what's your fav-favo-favorite song to play?" Maeve asked, turning around on the piano bench to face them. She studied their cellos curiously. Benjamin never allowed her to look this closely at his. His cello was basically his child.

Maeve glanced across the room and found it empty except for the trio. "I've never been in here when it's com-comple-completely empty. Usually there's someone lurking in the shadows or whatever, but it looks all clear today. Strange." She said, thinking aloud.

"You guys should play me som-something! And I'll play you som-something as well!" Maeve gasped excitedly. Her siblings never wanted to hear her play. They also never asked her to listen and critique them, so she didn't do this often. The perks of being the youngest child. Ignored and unwanted. Well, only unwanted sometimes.

"Being different isn't a bad thing. It just means you're brave enough to be yourself." ~Luna Lovegood
9 May 2018, 00:42
Music and Meetings  Closed 
"You guys should play me som-something! And I'll play you som-something as well!"

Maeve gasped, an exited look flitting across her face and Mia smiled at her.

"Sure. Let me get out my cello."

Mia walked over to the tall shelf where the cello's lay, turning her back to Maeve and Lucien. She brushed her fingers over the wood and chose one, pulling it out of the case. She wasn't strong, no, but she had power behind her grip, and the cello came out suddenly. She walked back over and sat down on a small stool, scooching it closer to her fellow Slytherins. She grabbed the bow and looked up, positioning her arms carefully. She pulled the bow across the cello and it made a screeching sound. Not good. She pulled the string tighter. Better. Suddenly, Mia's hands flew onto the large instrument, and she started playing a familiar tune. Bach's Cello Suite No. 1. It had taken her months to memorize and perfect, but it was finally good enough to show. The lilting melody came out and filled the room, and the bobbing chords soon drowned it, next replaced by the tranquility of the song. BAM. She reached the high point in the song. Mia smiled and continued playing. Nothing mattered when she was playing. Not Rachel, not her crappy relationship with her Grandmum. Nothing. Mia came to a stop and time continued. She looked up at the ceiling. It was perfect. Aware of the utter silence, Mia gazed back at Lucien.

"Your turn. Go."

"Chocolate omnia constituit"
//Co-Founder of Gobstones Club//Writer//
15 May 2018, 20:01
Music and Meetings  Closed 
Lucien had his black cello out ready to play, he kept it in the music room so it didn't take up space in his dorm. He was glad that he was allowed to bring it.. He wasn't too big on playing in front of people though. Lucien watched as Mia played her cello. The raven haired boy smiled as he listened, she had played the song perfectly. When she stopped she turned to Lucien and told him to play. He decided to play Wherever I May Roam. He had learned the song by ear through listening to the Apocalyptica cover. It had been his mother's favorite song. He brought up his bow and played the first few notes before messing up one, it didn't sound bad however. It sounded rather good with the tune but it still wasn't right. He laughed a small bit. "Sorry, I'm not used to playing in front of people that aren't my family." He shook his head and began to play the song again, this time he hit every note exactly as it had been written. He had been learning the song for years and had only gotten it perfected recently. However, anyone who could read emotions would have known he was practically fuming with anger over the fact he hadn't got it right the first time. His Aunt had always told Lucien that if he messed up it would disappoint his mother and make her life useless, of course it never really did but he had learned not to fail that way.

My eyes aren't both blue. One is green. One is blue.
~
My theory. Music can fix anything. Anything.
15 May 2018, 22:12
Music and Meetings  Closed 
On the second try, the boy played the song perfectly, and Mia clapped.

"Wow."

Mia said this with a smile, and then set her cello carefully down, making sure the wood didn't get scratched. If it did, then there would be hell to pay. Mia knew this from previous experience.

"I stick to the classics, usually, but that was really good."

Mia shrugged and began to walk around the room.

"Music is such a big thing in everyone's life. You hear it everywhere, everyone knows of it, but few people produce their own. Too few. We're so lucky, you know? We had the privilege to play these instruments, to be able to afford them. Merlin, we even had the time. I wouldn't be the same person without it. I can't imagine a life without it, playing."

Mia shook her head and continued to talk, aware that she was being overly loquacious. She walked over to Maeve and gestured towards the piano.

"Mind if I play a quick tune? I'm not half as good as you on this, but I'd like to try. Maybe some Tchaikovsky? Lucien, if you know Impromptu in E-flat minor, feel free to join. I know it's for piano, but if you can.."

Mia turned to Maeve.

"I'd just like attempt it. I'm supposed to play for an hour at the annual Alexander ball, and I'd love to be able to play on all of my instruments. To improve, and get to that level of fluency, I thought I'd ask someone who is really, really good, for some pointers."

Mia looked down at her feet. She really did want to improve, but she didn't usually ask people for help. She was...proud. Arrogant. She took a deep breathe and looked back in Maeve's eyes.

"Can you?"

"Chocolate omnia constituit"
//Co-Founder of Gobstones Club//Writer//
16 May 2018, 12:42
Music and Meetings  Closed 
Maeve smiled. "Of course! My father taught me piano, so I'd love to pass the skill fo-forward." She said brightly.

Maeve scooted over on the bench to allow room for Mia. "And I un-under-understand what you mean about the music. But I kind of dis-disagree. I think I'd be better without music. It's very time-con-consuming. Last year, I missed three major events bec-because I had to practice piano. My mother despises imper-imperfections." She said slowly.

When Maeve was finished speaking, she focused on Mia's hands. She wanted to spot any fingering imperfection, or just bad strategy quickly so she could get Mia out of it. If Mia wanted to get better, she needed to correct any mistake quickly. That was how Maeve learned.

Her father used to charm her piano to play a song, and Maeve would have to replicate it, without looking at the keys. She had to listen, and then employ her fingering techniques in playing said rhythm. When the rhythms got harder, her fingering got sloppier, which hurt her playing.

Eventually, she got to the point where her father refused to teach her. He was disgusted at her 'lack of talent', and didn't want to see her next to the piano. That was when he started working full-time at Saint Mungo's. Maeve got a new teacher, a gentler one who actually taught her how to fix her mistakes, instead of getting angry.

"Being different isn't a bad thing. It just means you're brave enough to be yourself." ~Luna Lovegood
16 May 2018, 16:54
Music and Meetings  Closed 
Mia felt bad for Maeve. They had such different childhoods, but came from such similar households. Mia turned to Maeve and brushed a strand of hair from out of her face.

"Thank you. And I'm sorry. I know how hard parents, or in my experience, grandparents can be. I've had to be under scrutiny since the day I was born, and since Grandmum recognized me as heir, its been way worse."

Mia smiled up at the ceiling. She knew that when she spoke fast her English sounded almost broken. But she didn't mind. She just wanted to express her feelings. And tell Maeve how lucky she was to play the instrument that beautifully. She played cello pretty well, well enough, same with violin and flute, but she was shaky, at best with guitar, and 'unwatchable' at piano, according to her teacher.

"I used to hate playing, just like you do. Now, though, I love it."

Mia looked over at Lucien and nodded to him.

"One, two, three, four, one two"

Mia played the pickup right on time, and continued playing the song smoothly, making sure to play staccato at the right time and fall smoothly into a beautiful crescendo. Mia bit her lip and continued playing. It was almost perfect so far, she had played forte when she wasn't supposed to, but the hardest part was yet to come. Her fingers glided over the keys and she gulped.

"Chocolate omnia constituit"
//Co-Founder of Gobstones Club//Writer//
17 May 2018, 13:17
Music and Meetings  Closed 
Maeve noticed a mistake in Mia's fingering right away. She pushed on the keys too hard, causing her to play forte early. She was slamming her fingers down to try and get through the piece quickly and easily. Maeve chewed her inner cheek anxiously. She knew a harder part was coming, and Mia's fingers were going to get all tangled up.

Maeve didn't stop Mia, though. She knew mistakes were key to learning. When Mia finished, she would be corrected, and Maeve would have her start again. This was what Maeve's piano teacher told her to do.

Mia was getting ahead of herself. She needed to practice with a metronome. Maeve carefully stood up and looked for one. There was one on a shelf not too far away. Maeve thought of the beat before starting it. She listened with satisfaction as Mia slipped back into the right beat.

Maeve sat back on the bench. Those seemed to be Mia's only mistakes. Due to the unnecessary pressure on the keys, Mia's fingers lingered a bit too long, and it was only a matter of time before she started stumbling. Maeve watched, holding her breath, anticipating the mistakes before they happened. Mia was a good player, she just lacked technique.

"Being different isn't a bad thing. It just means you're brave enough to be yourself." ~Luna Lovegood
17 May 2018, 14:32
Music and Meetings  Closed 
The hard part came up, and Mia's fingers stumbled. She tried breathing and releasing tension, as her teacher had told her.

"Mia breathe. Don't kill the keys!"

Mia smiled and continued playing. She got a bit ahead of herself, but when she decided to relax the piece sounded much better. She got through the hardest part and continued playing. She missed some notes, but overall the piece sounded fine. Not perfect, her Grandmum wouldn't settle for this, but fine. If you didn't know the piano or the piece well, you couldn't tell. Mia finished with a flourish and looked up at Maeve.

"I know it wasn't perfect, but I tried."

Mia looked at Lucien, brushing hair out of het face.

"Thank you, for helping me."

Mia shot him a quick smile and turned back to Maeve.

"I bet you noticed so many things that I could improve on, so go! Tell me please!"

Mia now smiled up at the girl, exited. She wanted to learn, she really did, and Maeve was an expert who could help her at these kinds of things. She had pride, yes, but she was willing to set it aside for this. She was really dedicated.

"Chocolate omnia constituit"
//Co-Founder of Gobstones Club//Writer//
17 May 2018, 17:35
Music and Meetings  Closed 
"I not-noticed two main things." Maeve began, gaining confidence as she spoke. "One, you are app-apply-applying too much pressure to the keys. That's causing your fingers to linger for a few seconds longer than they're supp-supposed to, so you try to move on, but you get tangled."

Maeve paused to demonstrate. She played a little part of one of her mother's favorite songs. "See? Gently tap it. If you're doing a fast song, you can't go hard on the piano, even if it's forte." Maeve picked up the pace in the tune, soon going so fast it was hard to keep up. "It's the same when you're playing scales. If you want to rip up them, you can't press down, as scales are sup-supposed to be played as fast as you can pick it up."

"Sec-secondly, you kept getting ahead of you-yourself. If you need to use a metro-metronome, use it. They're a very nice learning tool. I had to use one for the longest time, and I use it when I first start a new piece." Maeve said gently. "It really helps you get the flow of the piece in your head. Here, I'll show you."

Maeve grabbed the metronome and changed the pace. She began playing a Celestina Warbeck song. It was her favorite. You Charmed the Heart Right Out of Me was a nice song to practice on. She always warmed up with it.

"Being different isn't a bad thing. It just means you're brave enough to be yourself." ~Luna Lovegood
18 May 2018, 01:14
Music and Meetings  Closed 
Mia smiled at Maeve. She really was happy that she helped her. Mia was always musically gifted, and wanted to improve more than anything else. Scooting closer to the piano, Mia changed the metronome to a pace of 100. It was fast, but not too fast. Perfect to practice with. When she was first learning violin she had the same problem. She always got ahead of herself and was tense. It was a bad habit of hers, but maybe with Maeve's help she could improve.

Mia set her fingers down on the piano and started playing a classic. Debussy's Reverie. She played it slowly, her fingers gliding over the keys. At the forte part she played it louder, but did not press down too hard, making sure to nail the crescendo. The music washed over her and she smiled, looking up at the metronome.

Hold the G for two counts, Ok F, B, C#, F, what key is this in again?

Mia's mind whirled as she struggled to keep up with the notes. Trying to calm herself, and keep herself from breaking the keys, Mia focused on the metronome. She continued playing, this time slowly gliding over the keys like it was written. The song came to a slow stop and she looked up at Maeve.

"Better?"

"Chocolate omnia constituit"
//Co-Founder of Gobstones Club//Writer//