At the big Band Bash tonight!
Breck’s final concert of the year (ok, it was technically a VPA – Visual and Performing Arts – presentation) featured a fun ending. It combined a few of his favorite things – playing the trombone and Star Wars. Their last song was “Duel of the Fates,” the iconic choral tune from Episode I – the Phantom Menace.
To make the effect complete, the director used a lit wand as a baton (resembling a mini lightsaber) and clips from the movie played in the background. The choir even got into the deal, coming down to sing the vocals (which, according to Wikipedia, is part of an old Welsh poem rendered in Sanskrit. Don’t ask me, I’m just repeating what I read).
All in all, it was a pretty fun evening, and it certainly got us thinking about blasting off out of here in just a few short weeks!
All the bands played great, and it was a super way to end a Wednesday. There’s big pressure on now to buy instruments for them this summer; we’ll have to see what the break brings.
Their band director is a fun guy from Minnesota (he actually taught at the same middle school the kids would attend if we lived in the apartment in Lakeville!), and you can see a goofy picture of him by clicking on the existing shot!
The Middle and High School bands and choirs held their Christmas Concert this evening, and we had kids playing twice tonight! Breck’s 6th grade band got things going with an especially rousing rendition of the Ode to Joy from Beethoven’s 9th! See him in the back row on his trombone with the other low brass?
Alea demonstrated beautiful embrasure as her band rocked out to “Legends of the Ghost Dance.” OK, while not really a Christmasy song, it was still pretty cool, with all the thumping percussion and swinging saxophones!
Both kids have worked really hard this year and made huge growth as musicians. Maybe we’ll have to invest in instruments for the family this summer!
And what kind of concert would end without a Stutz wave to the audience?
The 6th grade held their “informance” today – part ‘performance’ part ‘information’ – for parents to check out the new sound. Breck’s been working really hard on learning to play the trombone, as our neighbors will attest! The trombone is tricky, as there are no valves to push or holes to cover. Instead, he has to figure out how far his slide should be sticking out from the instrument, an ‘eyeball’ method at best.
But today, when the “lower brass” part of the band opened up, they sounded great! They provide the foundation for all of the other instruments, and their rhythm and intonation were fantastic. And to top things off, Breck got to introduce one of the songs – he is a natural emcee!
What a super afternoon get together – a perfect break in the daily routine.
Ah, yes, the start of middle school and the beginning of another musical career. Alea joined band in 6th grade and took up the saxophone and was given a guitar by her friends this last birthday! Breck decided to pick band as well, but he was interested in a more, shall we say, ‘expressive’ instrument.
He got to bring the trombone home with him the other day, and we were all made suddenly aware of just how much power there is in it (and how LOUD IT REALLY CAN BE). Our poor little apartment will certainly rock and roll to the competing sounds of woodwind and brass this year!
She has gotten herself involved in the on-going middle school drama production, and is spending lots of time after school practicing with that club. She is growing into such a mature young lady!!
Plus she’s doing ok in her math class, but I think that’s because she’s got a great teacher!
With ogling oboe ooh la la’s
And trembling tuba toots,
Pianos pick a plaintive piece
While silk-like smooth sax scoots.
Our Alea has made such strides
Her band was great Wednesday!
We’re proud of her, and hope she’ll let
Her old man with her play (someday?)
The security situation here has resulted in an awful lot of events (that an awful lot of people were looking forward to) being canceled: community tree lighting and concert and buffet, Family Fun Day, the middle and high school winter social, the evening theater performance – even the soccer teams were not allowed to travel because of concern about airport safety. It is kind of a bummer for all the kids who have worked so hard preparing teams and songs and activities, but they are – for the most part – very understanding of the issues at stake and the reasons behind the caution.
Luckily for us, however, the band and choir were still able to hold their concert on Wednesday afternoon, and it was sure a lot of fun to see all the kids dressed up and letting the beautiful music flow. Of course we were ‘most proudest’ of Alea, who played a selection of songs with the 6th grade band. Great stuff, and she even got to pick dinner afterwards (she chose to test out KFC’s new delivery service).
Her band teacher requires students to record and submit assignments to his ‘blog,’ where he can listen to and grade them. Alea’s address is http://asbband0664.tumblr.com, so you can go there and listen to her brief song. Enjoy some music for the weekend!