Change Is Hard

…but change is certain.

Dancing to the Danzon

18 Comments

Tuesday night was our first band practice since our Christmas concert mid-December.  Though it was nice to have the time off, we were all eager to get back to playing again.  We are getting ready for a community band festival held at the end of February.  This of course makes us more nervous because the audience will be filled with our peers – other community bands, people that know music and will be listening with more critical ears than our family and friends.  So we want to have our stuff together.   We have six weeks.

On of the pieces we will be playing is “Danzon #2” by Marquez.  I had never heard it before, but our director sent an email out during the break letting us know, and telling us that we should go find it online and listen.  You can hear it here.  It’s almost 10 minutes long but worth the listen/watch.  This particular version is done by an orchestra, but we’ll be doing a version for a concert band.  I followed along in my music and our version is almost exactly like this one, with a few minor orchestration differences.

Tuesday night it took us 45 minutes to get from the beginning to the end of the piece.  We stopped and started a lot but some sections sounded pretty good even on the first attempt.   And there was a long duet between our first chair clarinet and an oboe player who just happens to be his 10th grade daughter.  They sounded so wonderful, the two of them together, that the rest of us, the entire band, forgot to keep counting and none of us came in after the 14 or so measures of their solo.  The director laughed and lowered her baton,  voicing what we were all thinking; what a wonderful opportunity for this father/daughter duo to play something so beautiful together.  To create something breathlessly beautiful with her Dad…it will be a memory she remembers forever.

That is the beauty of playing in a group like this.  There are several parent/teenager duos in the band and I think they all enjoy the experience of doing something like this together.  I know we enjoy having them with us.  We would not be the group we are without the support of many local musically talented kids.  They fill in our gaps, cover our mistakes and generally don’t treat us like the old farts we are.  Sometimes they remind us of how old we are just by their intense youthfulness.  But generally it’s just fun to have them around.

So, time to get back to the daily practicing.  Don’t want those young whippersnappers to outshine us more experienced players.  They get to play in their high school bands every day.  We have two hours a week.  But then we have less homework to do at night so it all balances out.

I hope.

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Author: dawnkinster

I'm a long time banker having worked in banks since the age of 17. I took a break when I turned 50 and went back to school. I graduated right when the economy took a turn for the worst and after a year of library work found myself unemployed. I was lucky that my previous bank employer wanted me back. So here I am again, a long time banker. Change is hard.

18 thoughts on “Dancing to the Danzon

  1. What a fantastic way for a parent to spend time with their teenager. That’s really cool.

    I’m sure your band will impress everyone in February!

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    • Hope so Sara…hope so. We missed our Halloween concert because there was a blizzard (remnants of Sandy if I remember)..and the highs chool lost power….the Christmas concert was on the day of the Sandy Hook murders…we aren’t having a good run so far.

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  2. That will be an awesome piece to listen too and play.

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  3. Sounds like a special moment – cool that you got to share 🙂

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  4. Such a nice thought, the generations mingling in a community band. Ours used to be like that, but I don’t think there are any kids in it any more. Don’t even know if there’s a school music program any more. Not like the old days for school music programs, that’s for sure–and too bad, I say. It’s about a lot more than the music.

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  5. What fun. I’m sure you will teach each other lots and make beautiful music together. And Rejoice! No math homework!

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  6. Dawn, you’re fortunate that you get to be a part of something like this. I think it sounds like education at its best, when the different generations can come together and learn from each other. And don’t you suppose your director knows that the older musicians already know they have to practice on their own??!

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  7. We watched the video — that director’s hair in the video was bouncing up and down so fast during the piece when the music got intense!!!! Wow! It’s so nice to hear about how everyone stopped counting measures and just were lost in the beauty of the Father/Daughter duet. What a nice moment that must have been. The Father must have been so proud! Mommy practices Trombone with her oldest niece — Mommy is constantly telling her niece how much better the niece is at the trombone than she is. (Mommy feels like an old fart sometimes too.)

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  8. What a kick to have parent/kid in the same group!

    I’m sooo far behind in blogging & reading–starting to commute and work in an office is really time-consuming and tiring. It’s been many years since I’ve had to do that. Trying to catch up a little.

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  9. P.S. I should’ve added “Change is hard.” 😉

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