When The Going Gets Tough

Musician and Guinness World Record Flautist

When The Going Gets Tough

I love my job.  In the past few days I have gone back to what I sometimes feel I do best – teaching, and I hope inspiring.  That doesn’t mean I haven’t taught at all during the past 6 months.  I have – via Zoom – but it was wonderful to see those students today in a school setting.  You can’t beat face to face teaching. Online is OK, but it isn’t the same.  I have also been back into the other schools I visit too. Those that couldn’t use the online option earlier this year.   In all instances the students have been wonderful.  The effect of Covid on these young people however is evident.  Nerves playing the flute where there were none before, tentativeness when entering the teaching environment, the need for reassurance. 

Like many creatives, my work dried up in March.  The Zoom teaching has been my only earnings since March until now, and I am so grateful for that.  A self-employed musician and a self-employed artist in a household are not a brilliant combination financially at the moment.  BUT….. we have managed OK so far.

‘When the going gets tough the tough get going’.  I have been organising a small home studio set up, which I haven’t had since 2007, so that I can compose more – something I have missed and hadn’t really realised how much until recently.  A huge thankyou to all those who have given advise and technical knowledge on equipment and solutions to tricky (well tricky to me) computer issues.  I am in the process of writing some original songs for Sparkle Theatre’s online pantomime, which should be on YouTube in December.  I have a number of other songs and pieces I have written lyrics for, and in some instance’s music as well, that I am trying to get down on paper and/or record.  I have already opened a Katherine Brookes shop on SheetMusicPlus.com which has flute and choral arrangement of songs and classical pieces as well as backing tracks for the flute numbers and some original compositions too.  I am now in the process of putting a shop on my website as some of my compositions are not available anywhere else and it would be wonderful to share them with the world, such as some of the instrumental pieces I have been commissioned to write for specific art installations etc.   

Whether I will be able to continue to teach in schools over the coming months is anyone’s guess.  I know that the schools themselves are doing everything in their power to keep them open and keep the students and staff safe, but in the current climate everything has to be flexible and that means there may be times when teaching face to face isn’t possible.  I am happy to go back to zooming, where I can, should the need arise.  I’m also looking forward to the day when I can go back to musically directing and performing live, but in the meantime I am going to use this time to continue to be very creative in a way that I haven’t been for over 10 years.  Sometimes life gets in the way. Earning a living is too important and the things we truly love fall by the wayside.  I am now back exploring one of the things I truly love- composing – and loving every minute of it!!

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