Last fall, in a moment of weakness, I agreed to let my daughter L. play the trumpet in the school district’s brand new beginning band, provided she promised she would practice in her room, with the door closed, somewhat out of earshot. Does that sound mean? Hmm. Well, last year in 4th grade she drove my positively INSANE practicing the recorder day and night, and while I’m all for a musical education, I really do enjoy my sanity. Anyway, it was a condition she agreed to, so we both got what we wanted.
When we went to the music store, I had to sign a one year rental agreement for the trumpet. I was a bit reluctant to sign it, worrying that L. would grow tired of it and not want to play it after a couple of months. She’s had a tendency towards flakiness with other things in the past (piano, dance) but she assured me that she “always” wanted to play the trumpet and be in band. When did this come about?
In September the band sounded more like a dying bird, or a roomful of dying birds, or birds being tortured with hot pointy sticks screaming in protest, or-well, you get the idea. They didn’t bear much of an auditory resemblance to an actual band. Flash forward a few weeks and, what have we here? A real band!
They held a winter concert last night and played several songs, including Au Claire de la Lune, Ode to Joy, and Lightly Row, and they actually sounded really good. The audience, consisting of mostly parents, grandparents, and siblings, would have clapped at anything, but the applause was practically thunderous. These kids worked hard, and it showed.
L. practices her trumpet almost every day. I never have to ask or remind her. She loves band, loves her teacher, loves the band kids. It makes her so happy and it seems it’s not just a whim. Maybe it wasn’t so crazy to say yes to this noisy instrument after all!