Da Musically Inclined Bomb

DePauw University's First Year Seminar on Writing about Music

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Notes on Notes

My beginnings started humble enough. I had no great desire to be a musician, and back then if you had asked me what was meant by being a musician, I probably could not have told you. My dad was the General Manager of the South Bend Symphony, so music was nothing new. Fourth grade had rolled around, this meant that the students of John Marshall elementary school could join orchestra. I do not remember being forced to join, but I believe there was an understanding that I would join orchestra. The teacher brought all the shiny new intruments and we ooed and awed at them. The teahcer played the theme from Jaws on the doulbe bass and I was hooked. This was to be my faithful stede into the world of music.
I quickly became imersed in music, but the shine was beginning to come off the apple. Needless to say music school was not looking anywhere near in my future. I was bored. The trivial bass lines made music drab and uninteresting. Keep in mind I was in fifth grade or sixth grade at the time. The solution became for me to take private lessons. This made no sense to me. Why should I do something for an hour in my house that i did not want to do for thrity minutes while getting out of class? The big reason to do orchestra was that you got out of class a few times a week.
I had a friend who played cello and we would play for our church. Now this made a lot more sense to me. The music was much more challenging due to the fact that we played a duet, we both had to pull our own weight. This was no problem for my friend, but as for me, my technique and familiarity with my instrument had become quite foreign to me. My skills were greatly below my friend's.
I asked my dad repeatedly if I could quit. The answer was a resounding no. So I did what any kid would have done, I faced the facts. In middle school and high school I became interested in theatre. I wanted to be in all the plays in high school, so I was. The summer before however I played in a summer production of The King and I. The pit was a lot more fun than I thought, but the real treat was getting to see the rehersals. I decided next year I would be in the production next year.
The next spring I was set to audition and to my surprise I got a lead. I was so nervous to audition, and now I had a lead. The rehersals started and I felt right at home. I did not even go out at night so I could go to bed and the next day would come. I was in love. Not only that, but i could sing. So much so that people who had studied for years were asking me how long I had studied to which my answer was never.
A friend of mine encouraged me to take lessons to develop my talent. I listened and the rest is history.
I was developing at a stagggering pace. I, of course, had to be told this by my teacher, because I had no way to tell, I was still very new. I went from simple musical theatre pieces to Il lacerato sprito and Madamina, il catalogo e questo. Music has been with me through the times I thought I was no good and when others thought the same thing. Music has brought me pure, unadulterated delight.


At 8/26/2006 1:47 PM, Blogger Andrew said...

The sentence in between the last two is: Music will be with me all the days of my life.

At 8/26/2006 3:01 PM, Blogger Nat said...

So, it actually kind of creeps me out that your story and my story are so similar. Isn't it amazing how you can start out with some idea of what you are going to do and end up in a completely different place? It is actually quite weird that we started with the same orchestra teacher and the ended up at the same music shool, with a different instruement. FOLLOW YOUR PASSION!!!!!!!!!

At 8/26/2006 4:42 PM, Blogger Becca said...

Two things:

One, I liked your story. It was ordinary enough in the sense that many of us can relate; and yet inspiring enough to prompt a smile. I can't wait to hear you at the recital.

Two, grammar. "I decided next year I would be in the production next year." It's nit-picky, but a pet peeve.

At 8/27/2006 12:08 AM, Blogger Melissa said...

I cant believe your dad was a manager of a symphony. That's one of the things that I really want to do.

At 8/27/2006 11:45 AM, Blogger Godfather Outlaw said...

BASS ROCKS!!! can be boring sometimes, yes, but someone's got to do it. I played King and I this summer... it's a cool show.

At 8/27/2006 6:40 PM, Blogger Kitt_Katt said...

It is a rather rough transition between the paragraph about private lessons and the one about playing at church. Try to wrap one up before starting the next.

At 8/27/2006 7:19 PM, Blogger Emily Rose said...

i liked the way you wrote this andrew
Going along with what Nat said, it is pretty surreal how similar we feel about music and how we have experienced it in our lives

At 8/27/2006 9:58 PM, Blogger Vera Lynn Waters said...

i love your last sentence! on that thought though, you might want a more conclusive conclusion. other than that, marvelous. or delicious as my friend trish might say. voice is so obviously your thing. i can't believe how quickly you grew. by the way, you sounded great today at the recital. you know, i've been reading all these stories and everyone has started on one instrument and found another that they liked more. it makes me wonder if i just got lucky or if there's another instrument out there that i'd be better at. either way, i know i'm not the best at the violin, but i love to play. don't know how i pulled this into me, but i like your story anyway. :)

At 8/27/2006 11:55 PM, Blogger Ferdinand_The_Bull_Smells_Flowers said...

Looks like you've got the shine back on your apple! That was pretty clear today when you performed in the recital.


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