Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Mount Douglas Holiday Concert

... the jazz band in the foyer ...
“The concert starts at 7 pm. The Jazz Band has to be there at 6:30 pm.” Neither Steve nor I could figure out what the jazz band would be doing. Setting up chairs. It wasn’t until I was talking to Duncan at the foot of the stairs as he was shining his shoes that I caught on – the jazz band was to be performing in the foyer as people walked in to take their seats.

That put some heat on us to get there on time. Duncan had already checked out his clothes and he looked fantastic – bright yellow tie on a black shirt. As we were driving out of the driveway and down the street Steve said, "Got your music?  Remember, last time I had to go home and get it."

"Whoops," said Duncan as Steve made a u-turn to go back for it.  "At least the ride home to fetch it isn't as long this time," continued Duncan as he leapt out of the car to run into the house.

 Steve and I stood in the foyer to listen to the band. No one was more surprised than the two of us when Duncan got to his feet and did a solo during one of the songs.

“Why didn’t you tell us you had a solo? What kind of son are you to keep secrets like that?”

“Well, I didn’t really want anyone to know. Mr. Awai just said to me, Duncan, you take that solo, and there wasn’t much I could do but say, yes sir.  But I have been worrying about it for days now.”

Two hundred and fift-six performers in the evening: the first band, the second band, the first choir, the second choir, the third choir, the first strings group, the second strings group, the third band. You get the idea. And those who weren’t playing at the time were cheering the others who were. The evening was full of songs I love: Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”, “Lo, how a rose ‘ere blooming, “Mozart’s Eine Kleine Nachtmusik” by a string quartet, Mel Torme’s “Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire".

I leaned over to Steve and said, “It is true what they tell us at the HD Live Opera events. There is nothing like a live performance in your local school or theatre.”

... Mr. Awai and the Grade X Band ...
I keep hoping and praying that Duncan will join the men’s choir next year.

I think the only way he will do it is if Mr. Awai says, “Duncan, I want to see you at men’s choir.

I studied the conductor, both out in the foyer and in the gym. Doug Awai wore a Santa hat and had a bright red and green Christmas tie on. The black of his suit jacket and his pants told me that they were separate pieces. The trousers were long, maybe about six inches longer than what might have been his normal leg length, so I am guessing all of those folds at the bottom of the trousers are a statement of style. His body was full of rhythm, his legs tapping, his shoulder rocking to the music, his head going forward and back, attached to his neck which also had a rhythm of its own. His hand would be tapping the piano, or he was a holding a stick and a bell. “A one, a two, a three, a four” and then in double time, a one, two three,  four and away they went.

By the end of the evening my own body was swaying and my foot tapping.

A wonderful concert.


PS  Steve told Duncan since it was his night, he could go anywhere he wanted afterward.  I thought Duncan would choose to do a treat run through the isles of Save-on-Foods as he does with his mother.  No.  He decided on a Diary Queen ice cream cake.  Life is sweet here.

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