Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Dallas and Fort Worth Weddings to get hot for String Quartet!

Dear Dallas and Fort Worth brides:

Summer is here.  This is the high season for weddings, but it is also the high season for heat. 

Many brides have a vision of their wedding.  I know I did.

Mine was outside, under gazebo, surrounded by blooming flowers.  Everyone wore suits and sundresses and we got married at sunset.

And my dream was realized. 

In March.

The truth is the summertime is a very convenient and accommodating time for weddings, for the bridal party as well as the guests.  However, in Texas, we get very hot summers.  Though many brides have envisioned the outdoor service, once it reaches the 90's, please seriously consider getting married indoors.

We are playing a wedding this weekend where we just received an email from the bride explaining the situation: It was going to be outdoors, but the forecast says 103 for Saturday.  This is a smart bride.  She moved it inside. 

Last summer we played a wedding in August outside on the hot cement.  We have a contractual agreement to play only up to a certain temperature outdoors (our instrument varnish would start melting if it were any hotter!), and the temperature was JUST at that point.  However, the cement created a sort of burner that caused the temperature to feel 100 degrees hotter.  Now imagine, you are a musician would wears formal black, playing in one position under the hot sun of the day.  The guests were not much better.

Who do you think had the better experience in the Texas summer?  The indoor wedding or the outdoor wedding?

So North Texas brides, my little bit of advice is don't let the vision outweigh the reality.  Your guests will thank you later.

One caveat: weddings at sunset or in the early morning during Texas summers fare a lot better than mid-day weddings.

Happily every after,

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

String Quartet to play Dallas Weddings in the summer

The Meridian String Quartet,, will be performing multiple weddings this summer in Dallas and Fort Worth. These are mainly private events. However, please consider attending the Dallas Bridal Show or Fort Worth Bridal Show, These bridal shows give the happy couple a chance to hear music live and make decisions on the spot.

I know some brides and grooms are especially busy and do not want to go through the hassle of attending a bridal show. That is why I have put together a collage of pieces. Goto: to hear recorded live, unedited music that you would actually hear at the Dallas and Fort Worth bridal show (sans crowds, lots of noise, and an overwhelming sensation to buy everything at arm's length). These music clips spell out the most important part of the group's purpose: our quality of music.

Some people focus on price only. Especially in this down economy, price can become a very important factor. But just know what you are getting for the price. These clips,, are unedited and include the core members of the Meridian String Quartet. What you hear is truly what you get.

We do not edit our music. This is a true, raw version of the Meridian String Quartet performing. I think it's beautiful, but please, judge for yourself:

Also, please know that with this quality of music, we also strive to provide affordability. Beautiful music does not have to be unaffordable and unattainable. In this one precious moment, this once-in-a-lifetime experience, we think that beautiful music at a price you can enjoy makes it even more special.

For the brides on a really tight budget, you might consider a string trio. While you do get a smaller volume of sound (3 instruments of a string trio vs. 4 instruments of a string quartet), and a smaller range of music from which to choose, the string trio costs considerably less.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Meridian String Quartet to perform in Dallas, Las Colinas, and Arlington this week with the symphony!

I have to say, that this symphony concert this week is probably my favorite the whole time I've played with the Las Colinas Symphony, Garland Symphony, and Arlington Symphony. The Meridian String Quartet players will be performing in all three venues this Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

To say the symphony has improved is an understatement. I feel truly blessed and lucky not only to be able to play music, but to perform with such a high caliber group. Over the last five years, this symphony has metamorphosized into a fabulous group and I couldn't be happier.

We are playing Prokofiev's Third Piano Concerto, Wagner's Overture to the Flying Dutchman, and Rimsky-Korsakov's Scherazade. How lucky am I!

I am listening to Martha Argerich's Prokofiev recording right now and am itching to get out to rehearsal tonight. If only she would come to Texas or atleast somewhere in the Western Hemisphere... she spends all of her time in Asia and Europe lately...

This weekend the Meridian Quartet musicians headed out to Waco to perform for a wedding (yes, we do commute outside of the DFW area for weddings and other events to perform). It was a beautiful venue- the trees were massive and proud and the crowd of people gathered underneath them in front of this post Civil War mansion paraded smiles around the lawn. It was a beautiful day and the wedding (besides the processional taking five minutes longer than usual -the bride was nowhere to be found, and caused the groom a little bit of an upset stomach until she arrived) was outstanding.

How cool is it to play for such a joyous occasion! I have a lot of gratitude right now that I chose a line of work that I truly enjoy.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Dallas Musician plays for fantastic choir in Duncanville

Have you ever had one of those moments where you are going along in your day, running around, fulfilling the usual...taking phone calls, feeding the cat, chewing gum, and then, unexpectantly, the usual turns into something extraordinary?

I had one those moments.

I performed for a choir. This was a UIL performance, to be precise. Very important, especially before their big Florida trip. I was asked to attend the rehearsal and then I would be one of the featured performers the following week at competition.

No big deal, right?

Except that it was.

I perform all the time. I, and my fellow Meridian Quartet cohorts, performed last week with the Las Colinas Symphony. I will be traveling out the east Texas this week to perform Tchaikovsky's 5th symphony (yay!) and working on meditation/yoga (yes, this will happen. It is On the To-Do List). I have several weddings coming up in the next several weeks in North Texas.... very important stuff. I do it all the time and take my "job" very seriously (I say it in quotes because it's such a cool thing to do: be a musician).

However, "the usual" caught me off-guard this time. When I entered the room, I was immediately drawn into the excitement. These students were so proud and excited to be singing. The were so proud and excited to have me at their school. I saw the look of accomplishment in their eyes and I marveled at how much spirit they had.

Then they sang.
And I played the viola with them.

And it was beautiful. I couldn't believe the joy that was emanating.
At the end of the rehearsal, the choir went crazy! They jumped up and down and hugged each other. I had students come up and introduce themselves to me, beaming and shaking my was beautiful. The performance was even better. While everyone has to maintain a sense of decorum for judges and audience, everyone was also compelled by the feeling of excitement burrowing to come out of these students.

In the end, the audience gave them a standing ovation.

So yes, it was a "gig", but it was anything from ordinary.

That is what so beautiful about music. Music brings people together and allows them to connect, to emote when words are not enough. I spent minimal time with these students- just a half hour rehearsal and a five minute performance. But the event will stay with me.

Go Duncanville High School Choir!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Meridian String Quartet performs music in Dallas for church

Meridian String Quartet members,, took part in a special ceremony this past weekend to honor the graduates of TORI, Texas Offenders Re-entry Initiative. Read about the TORI program here: The event took place at the Potter's House, this past Sunday. TORI graduated 150 past Texas Offenders. Many important officials and caring people were there in support of these hardworking graduates.

It is times like these I get reminded how wonderful it is to play music and take part in a special event. These are life-changing events that I am honored to play in and witness a powerful moment in people's lives. This feeling is very similar when the Meridian Quartet plays at weddings in the Dallas and Fort Worth area. We have a very special time in a person's or people's lives and we are able to express the emotions of this event through music. It's a very special moment and a privilege for the Meridian Quartet to take part in events like these.

In upcoming news, the Meridian Quartet will be performing again with the Las Colinas Symphony next week with a distinguished guest conductor. Quartet members will be performing Beethoven's 7th Symphony! Can't wait!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Fort Worth and Dallas String Quartet playing this week!

The Meridian String Quartet,, will be playing this week in the Las Colinas, Arlington, Irving, and Garland areas with those area symphonies. It will be a beautiful week of fine merry-making. The music program will feature works for the 5th annual movie quiz where the audience has the opportunity to guess film scores for a fun prize. See,, and for special details. Meridian String Quartet members, Glori Vela, Marcela Chavarria, and Drew Johnson, will be sitting in the symphony to play this program. Also featured is music by Vivaldi: Concerto for Violin and Orchestra.

Students have the opportunity to hear this music for the low price of $5, which is a service to the citizens of these cities and around the Dallas and Fort Worth area.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Dallas String Quartet inspired with music in Dallas, Irving, Garland, and Arlington venues!

The Meridian String Quartet,, is awe-inspired with beautiful music this coming Valentine's day. The Dallas Symphony,, is doing a Valentine's concert called Romance and Rachmaninoff. The Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto no. 1 will be featured on the program. This piece is arguably one of the hardest pieces to play on piano (an instrument with varied, complex, and considerable repertoire). Rachmaninoff wrote three hard piano concertos. Not only do you have to be a good performer, you also need to have large enough hands to reach those 11ths and 12ths!

Thank goodness I play violin and viola! While these instruments are difficult (20 something years of playing and I'm still working at it), I feel somewhat accomplished at the instrument. I enjoy playing at all the wonderful weddings coming up.

Marcela and I, have the opportunity to play at SMU in Dallas in two weeks for a young pianist's spring recital. This is an exciting opportunity, as he is playing TWO Mozart Piano Concertos.

Of course, the highlight of playing this month for myself is performing with the Las Colinas Symphony! Marcela, Drew, and I will be working with the symphony to perform in the 5th annual movie quiz, which features music from exciting films, as well as Vivaldi's Concerto for Violin and Orchestra. The musicians of the symphony will be performing in Las Colinas/Irving, Garland, and Arlington!