The Concert

Jul. 5th, 2011 03:04 pm
woostering: (goldy)
Pre-concert is all bustle and gossip. Getting into concert dress, fiddling with hair and makeup and tuning. Putting sheets of music in order, some crisp and new, some old and creased and faded. Checking that reeds aren't chipped and valves aren't stuck. Chattering to make the clock go faster.

Roughly twenty minutes before, and everyone is gathered. Ceremony, tradition, a superstition for good luck. A prayer, said together. The band is ready to play.

Walk to the stage, put the folder on the stand, wait for the nod from the director to sit. Rearrange the dress and the chair and the stand. Wipe off palms gone clammy with sweat. Play the Star Spangled Banner. Feel slightly calmer, as you know the ins and outs and the flick of the conductor's baton by heart. Carry out the wave of the last symbol crash, and sit, and breathe as the director turns to introduce the songs.

Wipe off hands again, wonder if sweaty palms are bad for the satin dress. Lick anxiously at the reed and tighten the ligature to make sure it's perfect-- a nervous habit. Raise the clarinet in sync with the baton, and everything fades away except the notes on the page and the anticipation of the upbeat telling you to go.

When the song starts, you become it-- the push, the pull, the slide of fingers over keys, by muscle memory now. You do not become a mistake that causes your physical body to flinch, even as your mind and heart and hands are living the next note. You do not become a sneeze in the audience or the creak of a chair. You become the song and the song becomes you. The pattern of the baton sliding through the air, the proud bray of the trumpets, the warmth of the trombones, the pulse and punctuation of percussion, the soft flutter of the flutes, the hum of the saxophones behind you. And then your own notes, sifting, playing, building between in the the spaces the composer left just for you. In that place between first and last breath, drawn through the clarinet by the conductor's hand, is the music, and therefore you. Each piece has its own nooks and crannies, its edges and gentle waves, familiar through practice but bright and crystalline now. One eye follows the ink on the page and the other the director. Lungs expand and contract by his hand. Fingers guide the sounds shaped by your clarinet and the song itself propels them out to wrap around the audience sitting at the edge of your consciousness. Each song feels different, moves differently through you, and the self you become is never quite the same. You are the song as it should be.

Some are intense, engaging the mind so completely nothing exists outside the collective vibrations of air at any given time. Some are gentle, some are sad, or happy of playful or fierce. Some shout a victory, demanding the audience hears the melody and counterpoint. Some sing a sighing breeze the pulls mournful ocean waves from the shore. Some direct themselves toward one person, some to the whole crowd, the building, the world.

The last note holds the charge in the air longer the it can physically be heard. The baton lowers and the band collectively exhales as the audience applauds, reorienting your consciousness and awareness in your body and not somewhere just above it. There are breaks through the night, announcements, acknowledgments, explanations, shuffling of music and seats. And at the end, the last chord of the last song, finally released into air and memory, you hear the clapping and you don't let go. Like a child clutching a jewel to their chest, you don't quite leave that state of being where you conscious self hovers an inch or two above you head even as instinct takes hold and you stand and bow and exit to pack up and put away before finding family and friend. Voices ring in your ears and the lights bleed through your eyes because in your head, you are still the song.
woostering: (picasso)
Haha, what? An update? I do no jest.

Yeah. Last week was unfun in that I was sick for most of it. Some nasty cold strain that started with a horrid sore throat. Anyway. I'm all better now. I think I caught up with everything, mostly. I'm still way behind on Crime and Punishment.

Saturday I want to the American Indian Powwow at the UIC pavillion. Fun. Except, I'm realizing that me and crowds don't get along so well. They make me really tired. Then Monday I had off (YAY) so I hung out with some band people. I should hang out more often. It is good for me... and yet I so rarely do it. But it's official: I can say I have something of a social life now. Not a big one- I don't want a big one. But I have one.

Also, I have a pretty awesome principal. He was cool enough to get up in front of us and lead us in doing a roller coaster. It was hilarious. Basically what you do is to have a group of people imitate being on a roller coaster. It's pretty epic, in a vaguly dorky way. But I give him lots of credit for even attempting it with us. And we actually did it. This is an impressive feat.

So this week I am trying to just sorta keep going, not drown in C&P and not forget all of calculus. Ugh.

I have to thank my friend an insane amount for lending me seasons one and two of a show called... House. OMG. LOVE. Love, love, love. I just started season two. I am asking for as many season as people will get me for Christmas. The writing (at least, as much as I've seen, which isn't a WHOLE lot, but hey) is incredibly good. And I really love all the characters. It's just... good. Good like good as a power opposite evil, at least in caliber and quality.
And yes, I know Hugh Laurie is british. I first became aware of him because of [ profile] smokingguncafe and all of Sunny Disposih's references to Wodehouse. I proceeded to find many episodes of Jeeves and Wooster. More love.

On a side note, I finally broke down and bought a copy of Panic at the Disco's Pretty. Odd. Another bit of love there.
woostering: (phoenix)
So. Lots of stuff.

First- I had an unnaturally busy weekend. Friday I went to see Terra Mysterium- Professor Mandragore's Salon Symposium. Epic fun and wonderfully hilarious. Saturday my mom was actually playing, so I was there. And Sunday, I had to come to school for band for the open house and play. Three hours. Not fun. Well, the actual playing wasn't fun. I have a ridge on my upper lip XD But, we did get Christmas Festival to go with Sleigh Ride. Yes, holiday music.

Second, which chronologically was frist- I also had to march in the Columbus day parade. The marching was not fun, but the wait becomes memorable enough to be considered fun. It was cold and we were nearly at the end, so it was a long wait. Long, long wait. But at least two old band members showed up, so that was good. The bus ride, though? The guy played the Lite or something. There's only so much of that kind of music I can take. Bleh.

Third, just in yesterday- We had a presentation from some people from Invisible Children which was surprisingly good. They are a group trying to raise awareness of the child soldiers being abducted in Uguanda. Go to it. I'm not sure what else to say, other than go, look. Now. I think the thing I liked about the presentation they did for us was that they didn't focus too much on what was wrong- instead they showed us what they did to get it fixed. Which was a nice change.

Fourth- A lighter part. Saturday is my VERY LAST FOOTBALL GAME THANK GOD. No more marhcing after that :D.

So yeah. Because of the Invisible Children thing Monday, today was our early dismissal. Tomorrow we have another presentation about 'internet saftey'. Ugh. I know how to not be an idiot on teh interwebs, thanks. So three days of 33 min classes.

woostering: (richardpuppet)
Lesse. Concert went well, yesyes. And we're playing Korean Variations for graduation. Of course, now I have to figure out how to play the first part for Bacchus, which is the recessional. *does not like playing by herself*

Visited illinois Weslyean yesterday. Nice place, I liked it. Dunno if I like it more than Knox or not. The two have some similarities, but very different feels. Of course, part of that was probably that Weslyean is in their May Term so a lot of people were doing off campus stuff. But the best way I can describe it is that Knox has a more adventurous, energetic feel whereas Weslyean has more of a home-y feel to it. Not to say it's any less exciting, but it feels liek the place wants to give you a hug while Knox is more grabbing your hand and running (in a friendly sort of way). KNox has a specifically creative writing major, while Weslyean just has english with a focus on writing. I like both places, though.
The though of college is exciting and sorta scary at the same time. I mean, highschool will be over, which is both a good and bad thing. None of my friends are looking at the colleges I am, which is good and bad. So, like my preferance for Knox vs Weslyean, it could swing either way.

But enough of that. Today some of my mom's friends that I know really well are coming over to watch some movies, so I'll be doing that with them. Will be fun.

Massive edit/additions with... the Mad Hatter! )


May. 13th, 2009 11:49 am
woostering: (richard)

Because they are fun. Yes they are. Last band concert today. It'll be sad to think this is the last one for the seniors, 'cuz I actually know them this year. But yeah... We finally got the gong for Korean Variations. Is fun. Mr S was telling them to play louder and Sallie was like "Come on, I want to see my ancestors!" She and Diana were getting all excited, which is good, considering they were the ones who wanted to play the song in the first place. But we're playing that, The Blue and the Gray (civil war medley), On Wings Of Eagles (a march), and Sorcerers Apprentice.

Last saturday the band was in Cincinatti Ohio for Music in the Parks. That's pretty much the only thing in Cincinatti- Kings Island amusement park. But DAMN that trip was fun. Between Apples to Apples, Deal or No Deal, and other random stuff... it was hilarious. Yup.

And, I believe my school has set a record. A rather horrible record. See, thursday the juniors went to six flags for a physics field trip, because it was physics day. In the course of that thursday, friday, and saturday, two girls got expelled. For VERY stupid stuff. Nuff said about that though.

And, damn, the school year's almost over. My friend Reebie, who's half a year younger than me, brought it up. "Next year is your last year. You won't be there after that." Basically what she said. It makes me sad. Which reminds me I HAVE to work on my two gifts for my section leader/drum major and my band president. Like, RIGHT NOW, I need to work on them. I love those two. Both are amazing.
woostering: (snoopy)

I'm in a good mood. A very good mood. I think my english teacher really liked my photo journal for Othello. It finished and I just heard this little "wow" from the back of the room. That "wow" means so much. But Friday was just a generally good day. Well, with the exception of fish fry, because I'm watching the kids whose parents are working and they are, for the most part, a terror. Blasted service hours for school.  Somehow two of them, who are normally little snots anyway, got their hands on some vault. They were freaking insane yesterday. There are these two that, by themselves, are manageable one is better than the other), but together they just feed off eachother and get WAY out of control. Looking at them mkaes me not want kids. Ever. Or maybe only one. There is this one girl though, she's about four, and she's so sweet. So I guess it goes both ways.But I'm almost done with that. The reflection paper will be really good, at least XD.

But then my mom and I went to a friend's house and we were all really giggly. I think I stayed up untill about one last night... But it was good.
Mostly I've just relieved that the school week is over because there were two big projects due (one of which was the photo journal). But I think I did well with them. Now I just need to practice my clarinet. Mr S pulled out (at one of the senior's requests) this song called "Variations of a Korean Folk Song" : Lookie at the youtube. If you scroll dow the side, one of the ones with all the... whatever language that is... has people MARCHING to it. I DIED watching that. I can't even keep my fingers straight and they're doing this DANCE. It's soo fast (well, parts of it are). But it sounds cool, so if we can pull it off it'd be worth it.

And my friend, who's reading the Silmarillion (which I tried about four/five years ago and FAILED at) told me her version of what was REALLY going on when the elves met the dwarves. We have a new favorite word now: ...Dwwaaarrves... yeah. It was pretty epic.

Well, that's it really. Things are going good and I intend to kepp them going. Yah.

Busy much?

Feb. 24th, 2009 04:51 pm
woostering: (richardpuppet)
So yeah. Friday was the last basketball game for band. Saturday was the State of the Art competition. Had to get up at quarter to five to drive in because we were in Wheeling for Capricon. But we got second place, and best woodwinds (how, I don't know, I only played about half of Americans We). Bus ride home was fun. God, Brett is hilarious.

And, of course, Capricon was fun. Would have been more fun if I was actually there for the whole thing, but it was still nice to go away a bit. Even if I had to come back. I got hot chocolate though. :)

Now this weekend, we're celebrating my uncle's and two of my cousins' birthdays, which my grandma has gone all CRAZY planning. It worries me sometimes. And I have a fairly large paper due monday... so that sucks. Blast the universe and it's sense of timing.

Tonight I have to help with cookie pickup and stuff. That's it, I think. *sighs* I am NOT looking forward to writing that paper for US history. Granted, it's on Louis Armstrong, so it is sorta interesting. But I like having a weekend to do that sort of thing because I can sit down and do it. Now I won't have one.
woostering: (field)

Number of things.

1. Spamalot is basically the most amazing thing ever and I loved it.

2. Was worried but not anymore because I cancelled my range course for drivers ed. This means I only have two places to be the 21, which is managable. State of the Art for band and Capricon.

3. I made a vid. (Link) So yeah. Not earth-shatttering or anything.

4. I think I know what hell would be. Organizing band music. Ugh. I hurt now from being in awkward positions since 10 this morning. But since I wasn't alone it was sorta fun, all things considered. See, two years ago or so they were going to tear down the building I have band in, so Mr S had out away all the music in boxes. Well, the building id still there, and he was told that it would be for a while. So today we put all the music bake on the shelves and stuff so we could actually find everything. But I never want to do it again. EVER.


woostering: (field)
So yeah. First should be the hardest this year. I'm good now. Took the PSAT- somethin-somethin-somethin. It's for scholaships. It wasn't that hard, except some of the math. And on one, I had the number written in the stupid box but not filled in when she called time. And it was only one oval to fill in too... And then it was there taunting me for the other tests. Ah, well.
And then I had a game. Only one more marching band thing though...
Of course, my clarinet is currently broken. One of the pads came out right before the Columbus Day parade downtown. And then, in trying to fix it, I ruined the pad so and my teacher doesn't have any for it :( So I have to go get it fixed, and get another clarinet in the meantime because I need to practice. Blast.
In mentioning band, we started Christmas music for the concert already ><. I have Sleigh Ride perpetually stuck in my head.

Completly unrelated, we started a cool project in Brit Lit. We're doing the middle ages, and are runnign an election between Henry, Elanor, Richard, Geoffery, and John. I'm in the group for John... and in charge of art, of course. I offered to commandeer the classroom chalkboards so I could draw on them XD. Should be fun, if an excessive amount of points...

Off to design the logo. Or, maybe I should do the research for the platform...
woostering: (goldy)

Seriously. Labor Day is every other day of the week, because school is labor. So is band, because -oh, yay- marching band. I'm sarcastic there... yesterday we had our first game, and the whole week I had to stay until 5 or so to practice for it. Bloody symphonic band, making me earn honors credit... Alright, it's not unbearable. But it aint easy, either. Still, playing Batman music and all of Mr. S's sense of humor makes up for it. Mostly. So my first week of school was sorta shot, as was saturday. And today I had to write an essay for US history. What drove me to take ap, I'm not sure. I spit out this essay in what, six hours, counting breaks and distractions and eating? So it's pretty crappy. I'm not in essay-writing-school mode yet.

Of course, there's tomorrow. But, that is the last day of the Bristol Renfaire, so I'm sorta busy. Now I just have to figure out how to finish my secind summer-reading book for teusday, and all will be good. Right.

My back is stiff from marching. I went to lie down on my side, and my whole back spasmed. Well, alright, mostly upper back, the muscles directly connected to my shoulders.

Bit about books and stuff )

So, after me being long-winded, here is something more amusing, and random:

woostering: (octobroom)

I find it slightly hard to believe I'm  back in school alraedy (yeah, start early, but end early...), and yet, I just sorta slip right into it. My schedule is a bit carzy first semester. But hey, every six days I miss gym class for my physics lab. And I have a crapload of honors classes. But as my dad said:
"You'll put as much effort into an honors class as a normal one. So you may as well take the honors, get the same grade but a higher gpa."
Thanks, dad.

Anyway, not much else to say. None of my teachers seem horrible, though my spanish teacher is new to the school and seems o ramble a bit. But all in all, I think I can deal. I just have to get through next saturday,  because after school for the first week I have bloody marching band stuff, and saturday is the first game. I hate marching band. >< But we are playing Batman music, so that one part should be fun.

Onwards Ho

May. 7th, 2008 04:47 pm
woostering: (kiku)
Well, the concert is over. And we might have to play Chorale and Shaker AGAIN (see previous post on the song from hell). Seriously, that composer was insane. But hey. Also did my persuasive speech today even though I was tired as hell. Other people said they liked it, so lets hope the teacher did too.

I feel much better today, like things have worked themselves out. And friday morning we're leaving for the band trip to Toronto. Wheee! Should be fun.

Er, lets see... that about it really. I have to start working on my english paper... And I want to do my spanish homework today so I can turn it in before we leave. So yeah.

God, I love british tv.
woostering: (octobroom)
 School is getting close to the end.  Though why finals are split up between thursday, friday, and the following monday is beyond me.  Really.  Either way it means I have to work. When I feel like I can't bring myself to do so. I am having major concentration problems. What is most annoying is that I don't know why.  I was fine most of the year, why is it all slipping now? Particularly when I have a paper for english...  Doing better in chemistry, at least.

And then of course, there is band.  Last concert is tuesday, and we leave for the trip friday morning. We going to Toronto :).  Should be fun, even though Mr. S said last year was the first in a while that no one had to go to the hospital... ><  Only thing, the music is hard. Wery, wery hard.  Our big one is something like nine minutes long. Oh, how I hate that song.  It sounds sorta cool, but... I can't breathe. *...need... more... oxygen...*

woostering: (field)

So. Today is Earth Day. Happy Earth Day.  This week is also drug/alcohal awarness week at school. The presentations are EXTREMELY boring, but hey, classes are shorter all week.  I know it's important and all, that people are aware of how dangerous (and stupid) it is... and all too often it's those who  least expect it who get hurt and whatnot. But I had a headache today, so I really wasn't in the mood to listen to a mother whose son died and a guy who killed other people. The guy did have a funny story though.

I'm not entirely sure why I got a headache, so I'm blaming it on band :). We're playing a piece that's about nine minutes long for a concert and it's... damn hard. I think I am slowly losing all feeling in my mouth from playing it. It sound's pretty cool, but I can't breathe. My eyes are tearing from the effort.  So I say that's what gave me a headache. I'm fine now.

Otherwise... Saturday is that start of Robin Hood S2 on BBCA, even though I've seen the whole season already (coughyoutubecough). The internet has its perks. And the second episode of Doctor Who. And then Wednesday I have a field trip for chemistry. God, I hate that class. Too much math and crud. Ah, well. School's almost over, sorta. Through May. Yikes, that's not too far away.  Almost halfway done with highschool. Didn't I just get there?

Err... that's all. I thinks.
Oh, right, I have to start doing research on my Great Gatsby paper. Grrrr....

woostering: (death shrub)
Went to Capricon. Was fun, but sorta got interupted by band.

Yes I was there... Clarinet woooo! Of course, listening to it now, there are a few spots with horrid tuning... but we won. Don't know how...

lalala. I was told putting art in the art auction at cons was a good idea. hm...
woostering: (life is good)
 So today was a good day. I don't mean that t oday is friday, or that I have a 3 day weekend. I was just in a wonderfully good mood. My clarinet mouthpiece finally came in, after 3 weeks and my mom hassled the place we ordered it from.  I got very little homework. And, the paramount of the day was band. Nick, one of the trombone players, made Mr S laugh so hard he couldn't direct... I think he started crying. It wasn't intentional either... it was just hilariously bad...
"Nick, why are you playing down an octave? Play what's written"
"Oh, I will, I just need a few days to get it up..."
And then I'm not sure if someone said something that set us off or if one person started laughing, which cause the rest of the class to realise what he said and start laughing. Very mature, our band. Yes. XD

AAaaaanyway... la.

... There was something else I was thinking about, but I seem to have forgotten. Oh well. It'll come to me at 3 in the morning.
woostering: (Default)
 So I was bored in Geometry. Go figure.  (after writing this and looking at it, that was a bad pun, sorry)

We need to catch the pigeon
Catch the pigeon now
Robin seeks to warn the king
Catch the pigeon now
Sending notes with Lardner's ring
Catch the pigeon now

Sherrif sends his hawk to eat it
Free the pigeon now
But they sent another to it
Free the pigeon now
Robin is not yet defeated
Free the pigeon NOW!, yeah.  I was REALLY bored. obviously.

Although I was thinking I should do someting like "Jingle bells, Sherrif smells..."
Maybe later. Maybe. But, I realized I didn't turn in my english paper to turnitin (site that checks for plagerism).  Ooooops. heheh. And I did alright with my chem presentation, I think. I hope. Blast. *crosses fingers*

Oh. Band. Band today was funny, because the director wasn't there. So we had this sub... But we managed to play the music without killing ourselves, even of laughter. I heard the drummers were making up instruments in the back. And the sub sort of let us play the music ourselves, mostly got confusing on the fermatas, cuts, and tempo changes, which our christmas music is riddled with. So....
Today was not all that bad. Actually, it is quite good because it is friday and I don't have to do anything tonight.
woostering: (Default)
So yeah we only have one more game THANK GOD!
At least yesterday it wasn't that warm, so I didn't die of heat in theose blasted uniforms...

But honestly, I don't see what's so great about a bunch of guys tackeling eachother over a ball. The great atraction of football is lost on me.  And yet I have to play for their home games, and march, in step, at the same time.  Oh well... I guess this is why symphonic band is an honors class...
We got to play the jaws theme though.  And I amused myself for a whole six minutes of the second quarter by watching a caterpillar.  A very lucky caterpillar, because no one stepped on it.  *sigh*
Then we did the halftime bit and we get to go home.  Although I like this one thing my band teacher has, it says:
"The football team will be performing before and after the band's halftime show."

And I have no homework to do today... so I will rot my brain sitting in front of a computer. :)

First Game

Aug. 26th, 2007 01:37 pm
woostering: (Default)
So, yesterday was my school's first football game.  I could care less, except now that I'm in symphonic band... I had to play.  Two hours in a black, polyester uniform.  But we didn't do any actual marching, so I suppose it wasn't horrible.  Just warm.  And during half time my clarinet decided it wouldn't play anymore (which could have been my fault but it's easier to blame the clarinet).  So I just pretended to play.  I don't think anyone noticed... 

It would have been nice if it rained, though.

Today I feel much better though. If only I had something good to do...


woostering: (Default)

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