Thursday, February 12, 2009

Two Realizations



Act as though you are, and you will be.

Sergio Assad's "Interchange for 4 guitars and orchestra"

Backstage with, left to right: Matt Dunne; J. Dearman; B. Kanengiser; Sergio Assad; M. Greif; Scott T.; Odair Assad

On February 6th and 7th, we (LAGQ) gave the world-premiere performances of  Sergio Assad's latest work, "Interchange" for guitar quartet and orchestra, along with the San Antonio Symphony under the direction of Gregory Vajda. The orchestra was stellar and the performances went extremely well. We're very pleased about that, to say the least. It took a lot of work to get the piece together; and the piece, in fact, was years in the making itself, having first approached Sergio about it years earlier.

Tonight we play the first of 3 performances of the concerto with the Rochester Philharmonic, Christopher Seamens conducting. To see if the concerto is coming to your neck of the woods, visit our website:

Update on the Hand Situation

I'm happy to say that my hand is improving. It has been almost 5 months since the nerve problem began, but finally, with some prescribed anti-inflammatory medication, a physical therapist and some chiropractic help, it is 90% better. The pain in the arm is gone, and some numbness remains in my fingers. At least I can play again!

One of the biggest tasks now is to regain my strength in my right arm. My triceps and forearm muscles have atrophied quite a bit. To give you an idea of how much, I can still easily press up a 20-30 lb. dumbell with my left triceps, but barely 8 lbs. with my right. This muscle will regenerate, however, so I'm not at all worried about that. But it does stay sore a lot. I won't bore you with details.

I haven't traveled or played concerts since this began, so this is the first touring I've done. I was nervous about it at first, but, as the symptoms started to shift, I gradually felt better about taking care of the problem while on the road. It's easy at home; I have all my little traction machine at home (thanks, Greg!), and have access to my therapist and chiropractor. But I've rigged up a travel traction device with a rope and towel, and hang it from a doorknob in the hotel room. This looks odd when I'm doing this, to say the least, and I triple check that the shades are drawn and the door latched before I begin. I can't imagine what a maid would think if she were to walk in and see me lying on the floor with my head in a sling.

I promise I'll do my best to keep this blog more up-to-date while I'm on the road. Lot's of great things to report!