Happy New Year everyone! Hard to believe we're in 2018! We're back in the swing of things and all three ensembles are diving in to prepare for our big MMC 10th Anniversary Concert: Modern Wind Symphony!
Take a break from wood-shedding those tricky parts and meet another one of our awesome members! This week, Brooklyn Wind Symphony bassoonist Fran Piccone answers our questionnaire and shares her fondest MMC memories (involving ping pong balls...) and takes us through her Sunday routine!
Name: Fran Piccone
Occupation: Assistant Principal
What’s your favorite thing about your day job? I get to support music education as a school leader.
Which ensemble(s) are you in and for how long? This is my 5th year in Brooklyn Wind Symphony.
How did you get started with MMC? I was asked by Sondra to fill in for Midwest [Clinic]. I remember working so hard to play a soft low C during Requiem so Jeff wouldn't make a face :) I was instantly impressed with the ensemble and proud I managed to keep up! I have never missed a concert since.
What is your favorite MMC memory? Too many. I loved working with Michael Markowski on his album. I remember rehearsing the sound effect where Val spilled all the ping pong balls. Every time she had to keep picking them up again. It still makes me laugh thinking about it.
What’s your favorite piece of music you’ve ever played? Again, too many! I remember in High School orchestra playing Night on Bald Mountain, and it was the first time I understood music as storytelling. The images came alive during the storm! Symphonie Fantastique has such a great part for 4 bassoons. We preformed it as alive score to an original movie. It was a neat way to connect art forms. I love finding new ways to collaborate and tell stories with music.
What was the last concert/ musical/ cultural performance you saw? Oh gosh, I have been working so much that I am just trying to keep up with rehearsals. I did see Funkrust at the New York Botanical Garden during the Chihuily Lights exhibit. In August I saw a performance of the Martinu Nonet, and learned about the composer's life. He fled Europe during WW2 and he was autistic. His music is so textured and unexpected, I dig it.
Any New Year's resolutions? I usually make them in September which is my new year, but specifically in 2018 my resolution is to put on a school musical. Such a huge and rewarding undertaking.
What’s your typical Sunday routine? If I'm lucky I'll be preforming somewhere, but otherwise usually a run, food, lots of emails, chores, and maybe walking to Target? I like connecting with family on Sundays either in person or long distance. I love sending notes to my godsons.
Give us a New York recommendation: Van Cortlandt park! Great trails, a beautiful pool, and a friendly community vibe. There are so many cross country meets there, its exciting to witness.
Finish this sentence: "I knew I was a musician when..." I preformed my HS solo recital. I played the 3rd movement of the Mozart Bassoon Concerto from memory, with my HS bandmates as the accompaniment. They clapped for me during rehearsal, it was joyful embarrassment. In HS I had two amazing teachers, my band director and my bassoon teacher, who made music the most fun challenge. I know I am a musician because I love learning and always getting better.