C.O.M.P. Music: Jaunty Biggelo!

We made it to the mushroom hunting party a little late—last week would have been perfect! The morels we found today were a bit aged and frost-burnt from our cooler weather. Joe says there’ll be another go-round and not to worry. They were still delicious. (I love how other-worldly they look, like little woodland aliens.)

Last week was my busiest—between some minor sickness, moderating after-school high school quiz bowl matches (turns out I’ve found my calling?!*) and concerts—we wrapped up on Saturday with a huge performance with Luke leading the way at a composition contest. You can watch here, beginning at around the nine minute mark. He won some money for himself and for his school—so fun!

We knew we’d have to accompany him for the performance because he’d added several elements. I didn’t know Saturday morning that I’d be the numero uno kazoo, ha! I think when he saw his reflection in the shiny Steinway he lost a little multi-tasking courage. Anyway, it went well and we all got to bow the bow of serious musicians.

Three of the kids entered the competition. We submitted their pieces back in the winter and crossed our fingers. GK had done a little acapella ditty and Jube did a four part guitar piece. Foy had toyed with entering a song but it kept getting hilariously more intense and literal (words like “burn it to the ground,” bahaha!) and he was half worried about the deadline, half totally cracked up at his attempts so I told him to table it for next year. Since then he’s been practicing piano non-stop. I’m sure he will give it a go again.

I wasn’t surprised Luke won because they’d really wanted a creative approach (“think about using non-traditional instrumentation, i.e. Orff, boomwhackers, etc.”) Luke just did what they asked. The hardest part was coming up with a title, which we did at the dinner table.

Saturday felt so lucky to just get to participate and see the other amazing composers. Some kids had submitted annotated pieces that were performed by college staff and students. Big band, jazz, horn ensembles, marimbas, cabaret-style with piano, some comedic pieces with props…it was wonderful. I recommend watching all three concerts on YouTube. (Except for the electronica weird stuff. 😉 Everything I really love—creative, brilliant, musical kiddos. The kids who were there were well-deserving. I’m just so grateful there things like this exist for young people.

Thanks to Foy’s mad guiro skills, Jubal on BWs and GK on second kazoo!

*The previous weekend I moderated our district quiz bowl meet and somehow did well enough to get invited back to moderate again at the next level of competition. All those years of reading aloud are paying off!

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