My focus is exploring, creating and reflecting upon the positives of life and connecting them to my art whether it be photography, pen and ink drawings, watercolour paintings, mixed media, digital media or any other possible media I dive into!
I hope you join me on my art adventure!
Thursday, May 31, 2012
You're My Best Friend
Positively melodious depicts our evening of joy. Music uplifted us tonight at a Youth Open Mike Music Night at the Legion in the "Gas City". Local youngsters bravely volunteered to play their guitars, pianos, drums and tambourines. Many also sang some amazing songs. I am so envious!
I am always over taken with emotion, when a young child has the courage to get up on a stage and play and sing for an audience! I know exactly how that feels. In grade three I sang at the Music Festival at the College. I was a very shy child, but I managed to sing a song about a sparrow in front of a crowd and jurors. I earned third out of three, but at least I tried. I was told I needed to sing louder... not better, so I guess I did well.
More recently in November of 2011, I had my own piano recital experience. In January of 2011, I signed my husband and son up for guitar lessons, and me for piano lessons for a Christmas present. I grew up playing the organ. I had had a year or two of lessons as a child, but had barely played since I was a teenager. Naturally, I had lost a lot of knowledge and skill. I had forgotten a lot of notes, and of course, my left hand was very weak because I chorded or played by ear.
I bought an electric piano several years previously, but only plunked away, and didn't really play very often. Each night and day, the piano would forlornly stare at me, begging for me to play with it. Finally, the pleading tugged at my untuned heart strings, and I took the plunge. I decided to call up my nephew's music teacher. I noticed at his guitar recital that she had a real cool, relaxed demeanour, and made the students feel comfortable and successful. She accompanied them, making them feel supported. I decided she was the lady for us. She luckily had room for us.
Back to my recital. Jeff, my husband, agreed to play in the recital if I would play with him and our music
teacher. I learned some new songs for him and learned how to accompany. We had a lot of arguments about keeping time and hitting the right chords, but persevered. The day of the recital at the library, will be one event I will never forget. The memory will always be there for me to put things into perspective. My heart was racing, my legs were bouncing and my breath was shortened... I/We were so nervous...Jeff and I were the only adults on the program. Also, the piano was a grand piano, and I had never played one. That made my heart leap and want to hide. My music book was way up high, the bench seemed all wrong, compared to what I was used to, and I seemed to not be able to find where middle C was supposed to be. Luckily, we had three of us playing, so if one of us messed up , the others would carry us. I tried trelax...but good grief, there were so many different things that I wasn't used to.
When we were done, I wasn't even sure how I /we sounded. My legs were weak, and I felt like fainting. The crowd cheered the loudest for us, not because we were the best, but because we had the courage to try. One lady came up to me and gave me a great big hug, I had never met her in my whole life. She said that we were an inspiration to her because she couldn't even play in front of one person, her favourite aunt, in her own home. Another lady said, "Well, done. I am going home right now and telling my husband that we need to play music together!" My mom and dad, father in-law and his lady friend came to watch us like we were young children. My mom video taped us, like every proud parent would. She asked us if we wanted to watch it. Jeff and I, both in unison replied, "NOOOOOOO!"
Just the other day, Jeff decided to watch the video. He said that I carried him and he did horribly. After a few bars, he quit watching and said all of the feelings of stress returned to him, and he just couldn't stomach it! I still refuse to watch and listen to the video.
So, when I say, I am very proud of the braveness of the young children tonight, I mean it. I clap hard and loud for each kid, even if they make a bazillion mistakes. I know precisely what they are going through! I now feel motivated to play piano right now...oh, but it is too late. I will have to play tomorrow and have another positively melodious night in the privacy of my own home, just for me! I salute the musically brave!
The photograph is "soul property" of Renee Dowling.