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marching band

This tag is associated with 6 posts

The Feline Fine Symphony

I can offer no real justification for this video. But then, do you need one?

“The whole world wide web? Is there a way to put this on just the American part?”

notmondayvideoSomething never before seen on the internet: Culture! Morality! And PATRIOTISM.

You may proceed.

Sam Eagle is totally my favorite Muppet.

The thingamabob that does the job is bibbidi bobbidi boo

All riiiiiiiiight! It’s time once again for my absolute favorite kind of post – the WALT DISNEY WORLD PHOTO RECAP!

I’m sure you recall that a mere few weeks ago I was traipsing about the most magical place on earth, being thoroughly happy to be alive. I tweeted merrily along the entire way, so you can read back through that if you like – there are some additional pictures to be had in that way. Below is the main collection, and as always, I put a distinct emphasis on music related shots, but I’ve decided to throw a fair number of just-because-I-feel-like-it pics too. Because who doesn’t want to maximize the amount of WDW in their lives? THAT’S WHAT I THOUGHT.

For example, allow me to clue you in on step one of successful Disney packing: do NOT tell your cat you’re doing it.


Okay, let’s get down to the music business. Have I mentioned me debilitating addiction to The Festival of the Lion King? It’s madness. I can’t go without it. Also a monkey acrobat rapped me on the forehead.



Speaking of musical productions, here’s the one for Finding Nemo! The puppets are incredibly well done.


There are you are, strolling through the Animal Kingdom, minding your own business, when all the sudden you walk straight into a Bollywood dance lesson.


Pianist at the Grand Floridian – very classy.


These colorfully attired individuals perform a song-and-dance routine all the way down Main Street.


IMG_0382 I’ve mentioned this calliope from The Haunted Mansion before, but this is a MUCH better shot of it. Who here plays the squidpipes?


Percussion… strings… winds… WORDS.


Fantasmic includes clips from Mussourgsky’s Night on Bald Mountain!


A piece of historical recording equipment from the Aerosmith Rock ‘n Roller Coaster. I strongly encourage you to click on the larger image and read the label.


Why, this set from the Streets of America almost looks real!


Apropos of very little, we are princesses.


Apropos of even less, this is the most elegant and refined I will ever be. That’s it. I’m tapped out.


This Mission: Space console picture is here just so I can shout FIRE IN THE HOLE!!!!!!


Speaking of fire in the hole, I successfully finished the Princess Half Marathon! My time wasn’t that great (this was tweeted as I went), but hey, done is done! If you’re pondering your own half marathon, I cannot recommend it enough, and it was HIGHLY musical – at mile 2 we had a marching band, at mile 4 a taiko drumming group, at mile 7 an accordion ensemble of all things, and at mile 12 (this is my favorite) a gospel choir. Just to get you to the finish, you know. AWESOME.


This is the happiest girl in the world.


And this is the happiest goat.


Okay, that’s it for now!


Concert Roundup Cool

  • Hey, remember that bit in Amadeus where Salieri pretends to be Mozart’s dead father and Wolfie freaks the hell out and composes a requiem and then dies? The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra does! So they’re playing Mozart‘s Requiem, which even I, an inveterate Mozart skeptic, admit is pretty darn good. The Baltimore Choral Arts Society helps out with the singing; Part‘s Tabula Rasa rounds out the program. February 28 at Strathmore; March 2 & 3 at the Meyerhoff. It looks like they might also be doing some version of it at the Weinberg  Center in Frederick on March 1. [ See it! ] [ See it in Frederick! ]
  • Or! If you tend to feel jazzy in the morning, the BSO is offering a matinee performance on March 2 centered around the African American influence on music. Specifically mentioned: Duke Ellington, Gershwin‘s Rhapsody in Blue, and a tap master. [ See it! ]
  • This week the National Symphony Orchestra gets glacial, chills out, cools it, and other puns about cold with an all-Nordic program, featuring SibeliusLindberg, and Saariaho. Even the solo violinist is Nordic – the awesomely named Pekka Kuusisto. February 28 – March 2. [ See it! ]
  • This week at StrathmoreViolinist Jennifer Koh explores the farther reaches of Bach, Parisian jazz, a snazzy marching band. [ See the calendar! ]

If you’d like your concert included in next week’s roundup, leave a comment or drop me a line.

Your band director has no interest in you marching to a different drummer

But I wouldn’t know, because it’s so hard to get the wheels on the cello.

The great divorce

Here’s a question: did the strings secede, or were they forcibly exiled?

I’m talking about the weird divide that exists between string instruments and… well, everybody else, in school systems. The divorce begins early: for some reason, someone decided that kids can start in on the violin in third grade, but they need to wait until fourth if they want to lift anything as hefty as a flute.

That’s assuming you have a strings program at all – I’m fairly certain my mother’s strong protests against such discrimination is one of the only reasons we even had a strings program at my elementary school. I was part of the inaugural class, taught by a band teacher who had been told the summer before, “Hey, you’re teaching strings now too. Here’s a violin. Good luck.”

But this is not a post about strings as second class citizens (although I would like to point out that my freshman orchestra class met in a former janitor’s closet off the cafeteria). This is about the moment the split happened. I don’t know when it was, but I have a theory as to why it was, and that theory is called Marching Band.

Nothing against marching bands! Honest! I’ve never been in one myself, because it’s so hard to attach the wheels to the cello, but I’m sure they’re a tremendous amount of fun. But yeah, you can’t really have a marching orchestra, and I think somebody must have said, “Well, there’s no sense in trying to teach the strings along with the instruments who can actually take the field.”

Oh, occasionally some enterprising pair of band and orchestra teachers will get together and collaborate on a symphonic piece or two. But it’s a rare occurrence, and a token gesture. These music teachers are saying, “We recognize that the symphony orchestra experience is an important one, which is why we’ve decided to toss a couple horns in on this rendition of Borodin’s Steppes of Central Asia. But it’s so hard to get the wheels on the cello, so we’re still keeping our classes mostly separate.”

Maybe your school had a more enlightened approach. Maybe you got to mess around in lots of different ensembles (you lucky jerk). But for a lot of us, band and orchestra scarcely mixed. And I think that’s unfortunate.

How about you? Any opinions on the matter? Music teachers, I’d be especially interested to get your thoughts – is this divide purposeful, or does it exist against your will?