I received two requests this weekend to accompany stringed instrument students for a competition, next Monday.
One piece is SEVEN minutes long! The other is only
three and one half minutes long. I'll jump right on that!
Never mind that I have never seen the music and would need a bit of time to work it up once I even got the music (google and youtube are great resources for me to hear interpretations of the pieces, and to see what would be doing as an accompanist an the duration of piece) never mind that my schedule may not match up in one short week to have at least one rehearsal with each student, never mind that I am actually teaching during the time of the competition, but...no payment was mentioned.
I was paid by beginning violin students at their first recital almost my hourly rate of teaching piano, and the music was pretty much sight readable. The violin teacher told me that she stresses to her beginning students and their parents, "paying for a good accompanist and providing the originals of the music, and arranging times to practice together, are a basic part of becoming a violinist."
These girls are high school, difficult pieces. Yet, because my son is friends with them, and because it is for the school, I should clear my schedule and do this for ... free? half price? In one week?
I was able to happily use the e-hell phrase, "I am afraid that will not be possible" and wished the students well.
Will I accompany my Sunday school class while we sing hymns at a retirement home? yes! Will I accompany children's choir at church? yes. Those are my gifts. I enjoy serving that way.
Stressing myself out with no time in a full schedule to cram in music I am not familiar with, and arranging travel and practice times for little or no pay? Plus arranging make-up times for my already scheduled students? Nope, not gonna happen. I am FREE!!