Friday, July 27, 2012

mediocre finale

Today was it.  The Big Day.  The culmination of the hard work of the last two weeks.

Okay, it really wasn't a very big deal at all.  Meego's summer band session came to a close, noted by a concert.

Six years ago, I attended my first such concert at this middle school.  Chaco and Wolfgang had each done their first stint of summer band, and I was pleasantly surprised with the performance.  They sounded really good, better than expected.  The band directors were charistmatic and fun.

I would go on to learn that this school had a pretty good band program with lots of participation.  In Chaco's final year there, one of the band directors was replaced with another.  The previous one was moving to a different school - not far from ours.  His daughter attended that school, so when an opening for a band director came up, he went for it.

It hasn't been the same since.  No biggie for us really, since none of our kids makes a big deal of band.  I remember how Chaco and Wolfgang both talked of how they didn't like the new teacher and didn't enjoy band so much anymore.  She was a bit of a biotch.  Not their words, but my inference.

The difference was notable today.  The concert just wasn't what it used to be.  The quality of music performance has gone down.  Attendance has gone way down.  The band program as a whole has gone down.

There's Meego warming up in the small island of Baritonia, part of the sparsely populated Band of Intermedia.

I'd say that summer intermediate band used to be about 2 - 3 times this size.

But I dutifully sat through it.   There were 4 small bands that played in all.  The intermediate, advanced, beginning jazz, and intermediate jazz.  It was a long hour.  Meego's band did okay.  The jazz bands were SO tiny, they needed to be supplemented with adult helpers.

I watched some others in the audience and didn't see much enthusiasm like there was in the old days.  Many got up and left as soon after their family member's thing was done.

And so ends summer band.  School starts in a couple of weeks, and Meego is still busily prepping for the Land of Reptilia.

It's good to have a next thing to move on to.  You got one?


  1. That's disappointing, especially when there was enthusiasm and impressiveness in the past.

    Next things in our household - well, this was a summer of high school grad parties. We attended 10 or so of them last month. Just got another 2 invitations for parties in August! (?!?) In September we move on to Weddings. We have 3 of them this fall.

    And of course, Kacey goes back to school next month. Trying not to think too much about that just yet.

  2. That IS disappointing! My kids were/are really into band and music. The high school band has dropped down some in the last few years, but we have a really cool director now, so I'm hoping it gets better. My kids love it so it's hard not to join in their enthusiasm. I am NOT a band parent however. I refuse, and the other other parents have finally given up asking...
    As far as the next thing for us... well, I see some major changes coming our way....

  3. Yes--another car (or truck).

  4. My daughter's used to be part of the school choir, they had a charismatic conductor who just brought out the best in each child. She left, and the choir just went down hill after that, as did the school. That woman not only had the ability to make the choir good, but the school too.

    The power of one person can make such a difference.

    We have a long summer holiday still to come!

  5. Apparently, you aren't the only one to notice the difference, the turnout for band members being the first clue. Two to three times in size is a huge difference. For the school's sake, they would be wise to find a better suited band director who has a talent for revving up the interest in band.

    What is my next thing? I am emptying out the house I lived in prior to moving to this apartment. That should be accomplished by the end of next week. And then I will be preparing for my first ever bus trip, in Sept I will travel by bus from Nebraska to Las Vegas to spend a week visiting my mother who lives in assisted living there.

  6. Band was an interesting experience for us. Stephen joined the band in middle school and then moved up to marching band in high school. We played band parent shtick including many Friday night football games. One good thing was that the band did better on the field than the football team.

    And the next thing to move on in our little corner? Need you ask? Less than two weeks to go.