Vanessa White


November 2018 - Blog Entries


24th November 2018


Hello Everyone and Welcome back to the life of Vanessa the Violinist! I don’t know about you but as the days get shorter and the weather is consistently more grey and miserable it can be very hard to stay positive and focused on the tasks ahead. What do you do to stay focused in these wintery conditions? Let me know your routines and suggestions in the comments section below.


Keeping within the topic of staying focused, as a full time working musician I believe it is extremely important to be determined everyday in your daily practice schedules. Determination can really surprise you sometimes, something that might seem an impossible goal one day, can easily become a reality with 100% determination to succeed in a very short space of time. It seems so simple, but our lives can get in the way sometimes that we forget this basic principle.


In my first lesson at the beginning of term, I was really proud to go in having learnt most of the notes to Sarasate’s Carmen Fantasy during the summer holidays. We worked on some of the passages I had been struggling to improve. I asked him, ‘Why do my fingers feel too lazy to move?’ He replied, ‘Because you’re not strong enough’. I was really confused, thinking that I am strong enough and I must prove to him that this was the case. I had another three days to practice before my next lesson, having spent six hours a day practicing extra scales, exercises, as well as specific passages I was struggling with in the Carmen. I came to my next lesson so much stronger that I couldn’t quite believe the improvement myself. My determination to prove to him and myself my strength really surprised me.


Since then, I have grown in strength and continued not forget the importance of staying focused and determined in my daily practice routines. There are really simple things to remember when trying to stay determined:


1. Staying focused


2. Never give up


3. Never let anyone tell you that you’re not good enough


4. Prove to yourself that you can do it (you are all that matters)


5. Believe in yourself and your abilities


I promise that you will feel great if you continue to strive for your top goal. Keep going and I look forward to hearing about all of your highly determined achievements.


See you next time :)


Leave a comment in the comments section below and if you haven’t already done so, follow my ‘vanessatheviolinist’ accounts of Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for updates about my upcoming posts. If you have any suggestions of issues you would like me to talk about let me know.

The Joy of Chamber Music

17th November 2018


Hello Everyone and Welcome back to the life of Vanessa the Violinist. I hope you’ve all been having good and positive weeks.


Today I wanted to talk about the joy of playing chamber music. As a young musician at the start of my career, I believe that being able to play chamber music with a variety of different groups and players is really beneficial for my musical development. You learn a lot about working closely with others and having to deal with different personalities, as well as being a great learning environment to learn about music from your fellow peers. For me there is nothing that is as special as being able to share music with other like minded players. Chamber music is a great setting to perform in a team but it can also be a lot of fun socially!


Last weekend, I had a really fun weekend working in a piano trio setting with pianist Radu Prisada and cellist Brooks Griffith. We thought about the idea of working together at the start of July having got to know each other at the Great Bowden Music Fest. Brooks needed to head back to the USA for the end of November which gave us seven weeks from the start of the September term to work together on a variety of different works by Mendelssohn, Dvorak and Piazzolla. To have a goal of recording as much as we could at the end. It has been a really interesting project; very fun, intense but like everything else not always the easiest. However, by the end of the project having spent two days together recording around ten hours worth of footage we all had a great time together in a social setting as well as were extremely impressed with the high standard of playing we achieved in the recordings.


This sort of experience has been such a positive experience for myself, I’ve learnt a lot from working with these two great players and it was extremely fun to play with two great musicians and spend some time travelling and talking to some great personalities. No one knows what the future holds for us, but I really hope this will not be the end of a great collaboration.


Finally, for those of you that have trouble believing in themselves, finding and working with a group of fellow musicians is a great way to increase your levels of confidence. You learn how to trust and listen to others around you as well as stops you getting isolated in your music making journey. Being able to share music with your peers is the most passionate and positive experience in all of music making. Keep learning and playing with others around you, have an open mind and stay positive.


I hope you enjoyed this post. Leave a comment in the comments section below and if you haven’t already done so, follow my ‘vanessatheviolinist’ accounts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for updates about my next posts.


See you next time :)

Inspiring Others

3rd November 2018


Hello Everyone and Welcome back to the life of Vanessa the Violinist! It was lovely to receive so many positive responses to starting my blogging journey. Thank you for the support and I hope you will enjoy my upcoming posts.


While introducing myself I failed to mention that I am very fortunate to have parents who are professional musicians. I’ve learned so much from them about what it entails to become a musician. My father, Christopher White is a violinist and taught me until I went off to music college and my mother, Melanie Reinhard is a pianist who has accompanied me so much in my musical history. Their love, dedication and support towards my musical journey is the biggest reason I am where I am today.


This brings me onto a project that I did during a long weekend in the middle of October. I was really lucky to be able to play and work with my mother. We had a very intense weekend recording a recital programme that was over fifteen minutes in length but could only be a maximum of twelve minutes. After two days, seven takes and a lot of concentration we got a successful take in the given time limit… Woohoo! For the recording we played the first movement of Beethoven Sonata No 4 in A major, the third movement of Handel’s D Major Sonata and to finish the last movement of the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto.


To conclude our weekend playing together, we had a lovely opportunity to perform a lunchtime recital at the Loughborough Baptist Church. The concert series raises money for Rainbows hospice. It was magnificently timed with the start of the school half term holidays. Having been in the sixth form at Loughborough High School I had some familiar faces in the audience which made my experience playing at this concert so much more enjoyable.


It was particularly lovely to see a teenage boy there in the audience that I had the pleasure of starting up and coaching his year six string quartet when I was in my last year of school. His mother told me that he described who I was to a family friend before the concert as the girl who started his string quartet that are still playing today. To hear how I’ve already inspired the next generation of musicians is really heartwarming.


It’s reasons like this that I love what I do as a performer and a teacher, because I am able to uplift and inspire a diverse group of people. So the next performance that you give or the next lesson you teach can really affect someone’s life in a positive way.


Keep inspiring people around you.


See you next time! Don’t forget to write your comments in the comments section below and if you’re new please follow my Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts on ‘vanessatheviolinist’ for updates about upcoming posts.