Wednesday, November 19, 2008

A new endeavor in my life

Last summer I met a cello player. We had gathered with some mutual friends for a Creative Music Night. Everybody brought a song to sing or play or share, simply to experience the joy of communal music-making. While there was a lot of good music shared, it turned out that Grant, the cello player, and I were the two classically-trained musicians in the group. Which gave us some sort of connection.

Grant told me he played in a local orchestra, and that they were looking for more brass players, and he encouraged me to audition. Which got me thinking about 'way back when,' when I was involved in a few orchestras and brass ensembles. And got me thinking how much I missed those days.

Now I run into Grant almost every Tuesday when he brings his kids to a dance class here at the church. And he's been bugging me to join the orchestra. So shortly before the eye surgery, I began to practice a lot more regularly. Then, the week after surgery, I began to practice again, trying to get my chops back in shape. The first few days were hairy, but it's all been coming back.

Last night I auditioned for the open trumpet position with the Gig Harbor Peninsula Symphony Orchestra.

The audition lasted all of 10 minutes. Play a major scale, a minor scale, an excerpt from a technical piece, an excerpt from a melodic piece, and some brief sightreading.

Then the director took me out into the hall.

"Welcome to the orchestra! Let me introduce you around!"

Not that I was overly nervous, but it had been awhile since I'd auditioned for anything, and it's been over a decade since I've done any serious orchestral playing. So I wasn't exactly certain I'd make it.

But I am now the official 2nd-chair trumpet player of the Gig Harbor Peninsula Symphony Orchestra.

Following the audition I sat through my first rehearsal with the group. It was exciting, fun, a little weird to be back in the saddle after so many years off. But after about 10 minutes, it simply felt natural again. And the people were friendly and welcoming. It was a blessing to look across the room and see Grant over there, just so it didn't feel like a room full of strangers. But I had four or five go out of their way to say "hi" and welcome me in. So I'm looking forward to becoming a regular part of the group.

Our next concert is Friday, December 12, if anybody's interested. We're doing the Haydn 101 (the Clock), Three German Dances by Mozart, and a couple other pieces. Come if you like music, or come if you like me. Either way, should be a good time.


Lambwervant said...

Way to go Dan. Congrats. When and where is the concert? If I have the day off I'd love to come and I'm sure a lot of others in the congregation would too. We need to support our pastor after all. By the way, does Grant dance in the dance class? Maybe you'd be good at that too...ha ha.

PS You'd look great in a tutu!

Gracie said...

Great story. My sister Carmen has been playing in the Fargo Symphony since she moved there and I'm proud and envious of her.
I'm often a bit whimsical for my orchestra days but find I am too lazy to read music anymore. I'm much more content to play the harmonies and melodies I hear in my spirit and soul while playing with others which doesn't fit into the "formal" orchestra/symphony, etc. life. Thankfully, there is a place for "my" style, too, at least, with my church worship team.
Enjoy your journey!

Kim said...

Congrats! How wonderful! By the way, I'm looking for a trumpet player for "Seussical" in the if you're available... ;-)