Unfortunately these charms couldn’t arrive in NZ in time to be gifted to Robbie Daymond and Ray Chase during Wellington Armageddon this weekend, but at least when the package *does* arrive, @keyshakitty will get her belated birthday present \o/
*Vin Diesel voice* One outta three, a win’s a win.
Today, a stranger reminded me of something very important.
I had just finished performing and being adjudicated at one of my first solo voice performances. I’m trying to perform as much as I can so I can get used to it in time for my university audition next school year.
I did okay. Not as well as I wanted to, but fine. As I was walking out, I couldn’t help but think to myself “man, if I were to audition right now, I probably wouldn’t get in… how am I ever going to get to where I need to be before I audition?”
I got into the uber that would take me home (neither of my parents were available to pick me up) and since I live an hour away, the driver and I had a while to chat. He was originally from India, and then lived in Europe for a while. He had moved to Canada last year.
When I told him I was coming from a voice performance, he told me (in a very thick Indian accent) that singing is a god gift, but that I should also be proud of all the hard work it takes. Though I don’t believe in god, I thought that was really sweet. But he also reminded me of something else. He probably didn’t even realize how much needed to hear it then. His exact words were “never lose your heart.” I’m sure that wasn’t word for word what he was trying to say (given the language barrier) but I think it’s a perfect way to put it. He said “it will go up and down and up and down, but never lose your heart.”
We talked more about music (turns out he loves listening to music) but I have a feeling that I won’t be forgetting this encounter any time soon.
For all the other young musicians out there, don’t stop doing what you love just because you aren’t where you want to be. Some times in your musical journey will be better than others, and sometimes failure will cloud your judgement. Remember that music is in your heart, and that hasn’t changed. Never lose your heart.
He caught a glimpse of Septa Mordane in the gallery, with his daughter Sansa beside her. Ned felt a flash of anger; this was no place for a girl. But the septa could not have known that today’s court would be anything but the usual tedious business of hearing petitions, settling disputes between rival holdfasts, and adjudicating the placement of boundary stones.
I don’t even know how it took me this long to do chapter 4 (please don’t ask). Unfortunately the last chapter will definitely take a while since I’ll be starting school soon, but I’ll definitely finish it at some point.
For those who haven’t read “tension”, the short story about the CCG art festival, you can read chapter 1 here. Enjoy!
How having an amazing teacher can change your life
Get ready for one long text post.
I started playing horn in seventh grade and I was really shy, like hopelessly shy. Playing in front of people was impossible for me. My middle school music teacher was annoyed by it, but didn’t do much to change it. So I just never played solos. Ever.
Then I started high school. It was horrifying walking into the music for the first practice. I was one of two horns in the entire school. The other one was in 11th grade so I was all alone in jr. Band. And then the music teacher walked in. And everything went down hill from there.
This man was the most egotistical person I’ve ever met. (We took coach buses everywhere we went cause it was good for our ‘image’, it’s uncommon to take a coach bus here) He didn’t care how bad he made us feel when we screwed up. If it wasn’t perfect he wasn’t happy, cause that meant we wouldn’t get gold at festival and that’s all he cared about. He made that very clear. I practiced so hard to be able to play the way he wanted me to. It only made my previous anxiety about playing worse. I cried so much during rehearsal and he didn’t care he just kept going and basically told me to get it together.
When band class started in second semester of that year. I couldn’t play in front of people without bursting into tears. My final solo was a disaster. After that, I wanted to put down my horn and never play again.
But I played again next year. He needed his horn player. I was “important to the integrity of the band” He convinced me to come back and It was a little better.
Until the musical started. We did into the woods as our musical and everyday after school for three months I had to deal with his need for perfection. I was told I wasn’t good enough, everyday for three months. It wasn’t a typical conductor saying we weren’t going to be ready to perform a piece. He said we were horrible. I started crying once and he told me to “get it together, real performers don’t cry” All he did was berate me and others. I hated myself.
When our longer weekend practices started we would break for half an hour for dinner. One day we were screwing one part up. He wouldn’t let us eat until we played it perfectly. By the time we did we had five minutes to shove food down our throats, or what was left of it after the cast ate anyway. It was the lowest I’d ever felt in my life. We are high school students, not professional players.
But then it all changed. For the better (thank god)
I moved about a year ago, just after we finished our musical and started at a new high school this year, so I had a new music teacher. I remember the first day walking into the music and instead of a gloomy, hateful atmosphere. It was loud and happy place and everyone was laughing and a shoe went flying through the air. I approached the music teacher and told her I play horn. She was giddy. She told me about all the bands they have at the school and about the music they play and stuff they do, and before I knew it I was going to fall music camp.
It was the most fun I’d ever had with music ever. I made so many friends and began to come out of my shell. She complemented my playing and instead of berating me when I played it wrong she would help me. She made me excited to play my instrument, something I hadn’t felt in two years. Recently for a solo in class, she brought in her own horn and played with me so I could hear how it sounded and felt. She nor any of my band mates made me feel horrible about myself again. I’ve only ever cried once at a rehearsal this year. I started to get way more confident. I can play when she calls on me. It’s hard to believe I’ve only been at this school for seven months.
I told my new teacher at the beginning of the year, right off the bat, I would never play a solo for her.
Today, at festival, I played a solo in front of a heck of a lot of people and an adjudicator.
I have no idea why I kept playing horn at my old school when he made me feel so bad about myself. But that doesn’t really matter now. I’m happy at my new school and really proud of how far I’ve come. It really goes to show you what the difference between a good and bad teacher can make for a student.