Day 5: Encore, Encore – A Concert for the Ages!

Day 5:

Some of the kids had a bit of jetlag over the last couple of days, but with the extra rest between last night and this morning they are all feeling rested and on top of things today.


This morning we went to the Viking Village -similar to the castle yesterday. My students learned how to fight by handling weapons from the “viking era”. At the end of our “tour” we had a viking “fight” and everyone had to “fend” for themselves. Matthew was the winner, however Emma Sun was truly the champion with her awesome fencing skills. I love how no matter the age – we all like to “play” and are truly “kids” at heart.

The focus of today however was our concert and what an amazing concert it was.

Simply put, the students outdid themselves tonight. They played brilliantly with beautiful tone and a great deal of musicality. It was outstanding from start to finish. They even received two standing ovations and we played two encores!! They had great stamina tonight and I was extremely pleased and I know that they were as well.


We performed in the St. Nicholas’ Church (Niguliste Church) in the center of Tallinn. It was a packed house tonight!

This hall was very different from our last venue.

“Niguliste” used to be one of the wealthiest churches in Tallinn during the medieval times. Now the church is actually a museum and a concert hall. It has different acoustics and the sound bounces off the walls quite a bit. It’s exciting when we finish a big chord because it rings out for more than 4 seconds. My students were in awe when we started to rehearse and get a sense of their surroundings. When they played the opening of Vivaldi’s Summer (3rd mov’t) and their sound rang out all my students stopped playing and just reveled in the “ring” of their sound. I wish I could’ve captured their faces for everyone. It was just pure happiness.

We changed things up a bit for tonight’s concert and didn’t play March Slav or Scheherazade and instead played Tchaikovsky’s Elegie. We also performed Bach’s Arioso and it was performed by Clark (Clark and Ford will trade off) and the Vivaldi Concerto for 4 violins performed by the two sets of sisters – Sophie and Haley and Abby and Samantha.

Both pieces were well performed. Bravo.

The concert went exceptionally well from start to finish. The students played with incredible energy and spirit. There was depth to their quality and they all had excellent showmanship. When you go on tour it’s neat to see your orchestra adapt and perform in different venues and under different circumstances.  So far my students are exceeding my expectations and I’m very proud of all of them. Well done to all for a fantastic concert tonight. For me the highlight was that they performed as one ensemble….one “team” with character and heart. I’m so proud of them all.




Tomorrow we have a very crazy travel day. We will be in three countries in one day. I know it’s Europe and things are closer however it will still be incredibly busy. We will have breakfast at 5am, catch a ferry that leaves Estonia at 7:30am and go back to Finland – arriving in Helsinki at 9:30am and then catch a 11:00am train to Russia and arrive in St. Petersburg around 2:30pm. It’s a bit of a stressful day, but I’m hoping that everything will go smoothly. I have the carnet and everyone has their passports and visas so we are ready to go. I am very excited to go to Russia. I can’t wait to tell you all about it tomorrow.

Stay tuned………………………

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