Here's some technical stuff I learned:
1. The slow it down method really does work very effectively.
2. Tackle the hardest bits first & always keep in mind the way things are connected/relate to each other.
3. Practice the relative scales in at least 2 different fingerings is immensely helpful
4. I tend to use the wrong muscle groups a lot, or go horribly out of alignment when trying to hit something tricky - this is a downward spiral, because going out of alignment generally makes things tricky.
5. I am trying to figure out what exactly the other cellists' (who are all waaaay more advanced than me) have that I don't. One thing I'm noticing relates to the giant mess of my left hand technique. It seems like the other cellists are commonly keeping the general weight of the arm down into the string, and it also seems like they are keeping there fingers generally close to the string. All their movements are very efficient.
I tend to release my weight a lot and use some very ineffective movements to try to accomplish things. This would explain in part why playing Haydn C is still a major struggle for me/why a lot of my technique doesn't seem to work on any long-lasting level.
I think the next key in my practice is to constantly look for the most efficient movements possible & to consciously work on keeping my weight down (so that I can at least have control over when I use it and when I don't. I feel like it's very important to a general tonal/expressive palette to be able to do both.
One of my goals is to learn to be more imaginative in my playing and to be able to play the same riffs in many different feels/ways.
That's what occurs to me for now ... the YTSO audition really pushed my technique a lot & is giving me tons of food for thought with watching other cellists...
So glad I did it, even if the vid's a bit embarassing (for non-technical reasons): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ea9HrKNdQQ