Sub-Evil Boy’s first band concert

Sub-Evil Boy had his first band concert tonight, and it was really quite fun. I’d been a bit nervous going in, since the 5th graders only started with these instruments in September, but it was actually quite impressive. I’m not going to rush out and buy the CD quite yet, but I’ve heard older folks sound a whole lot worse on more than one occassion! Their first piece (“Ancient hunter” by Sean O’Loughlin) was particularly good, suiting the huge group of students (all but a handful of the 5th graders are in the band) with wonderful depth and color.

Sub-Evil Boy was a little disappointed by how hard it was to hear the french horns (there are only two of them) in that ocean of players, but this is, after all, part of being one player among many.

One of the stand-outs had to be Mitchell’s stint as M.C. since he couldn’t play his sax due to surgery a few days ago. He was confident and quite funny in front of a big audience, and handled a couple of mix-ups really well. The band teacher (Dot Vick) gets huge props for pulling these kids together and making a real band out of them in such short notice, and the sax section in the 6th Grade Jazz Band was really impressive.

The one (unsurprising) bummer is how stiff a lot of the kids were. A few of them (including Sub-Evil Boy) tapped their feed and showed some life, but way too many never moved anything that wasn’t strictly required to make the music. Part of this is just their struggle with their instruments and music, but part of it is that stiff, “well-behaved” manner so many people up here have when “enjoying” music. It (sort of) works for the more classical pieces, but they’re going to have to loosen up some if they’re ever going to get past the music on the page.

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WeatherGirl’s Station :: Lord of the Rings Marathon

WeatherGirl mentioned
, we had this massive Lord of the Rings festival yesterday, watching the director’s cuts of all three films in one massive day of craziness. Sub-Evil Boy invited J.A. over and Paula Argie joined us for the entire day as well. Ellery showed up near the end of the second film, and Dori came over for the third. There was ton’s of excellent food, and huge thanks to the WeatherGirl and everyone else who brought stuff for ensuring that we happily consumed far more calories than we burned :-).

I think I found it a bit much all at once. I was putting a lot of attention into working on, though, and while I’m sure that was good in terms of getting these things up and running, I’m not sure whether it made it easier or harder to deal with the overload of LotR.

All that said, though, they are really quite spectacular films and wonderful accomplishements. It seems clear, for example, that the rendition of the Smeagol/Gollum is a pretty landmark event, combining excellent wriring, Andy Serkis’s acting that was both incredibly physical while being sensitive to the complexities of the character, and the excellent CG randering of the on-screen individual.

Actually I might want to re-watch the third film sometime this week while all the back story is fresh in my mind, but I have the energy to actually focus on the last film. Can’t see having the time, but a guy can dream.

Currently listening to Allies – Music For Dance, Vol.2 by my hero Fred Frith.

I need to go have a shower.

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