Alas! It is finally time for the infamous annual presentation of The Phantom of the Opera!!!
Today was the day in my chorus class. All of the young ladies were swooned and entranced as Mrs. Horne gracefully belted out the melodies to this classic horror-story-turned-romance! I just love it! I remember the first time I heard the story in her class in sixth grade. My first thought was, Wow, how romantic! This has ever since opened up my eyes and ears to the world of musicals and has changed my world forever. I’m serious! You never really appreciate art or music until you learn of something so profound as to make you have a revelation of sorts!
Ever since, I’ve become obsessed with musicals and Andrew Lloyd Webber, to be precise. I’ve added at least ten to my mental musical repertoire, such as Jesus Christ Superstar, Cats, Rent, and Madame Butterfly. But, The Phantom of the Opera has ultimately topped my list and probably will for the rest of my life! Right now, I own the 2004 movie with Emmy Rossum, and one of the actual musical’s CDs (I think it’s something like the London Symphony Chorus). I’m planning on watching the movie in celebration of Valentine’s Day either tommorrow or Friday. I’m so excited! Even though it’s, like, the 6th time I’ve seen it!
Anyway, so I spent the rest of the day humming with all of the songs stuck in my head. What are you doing for Valentine’s Day?
I thought that I should update you guys on the music department, (Chorus, Band, y’all know).
Chorus: My chorus class will not be participating in the MPA’s as some of you may remember from last year. Boo Hoo…But, it’s still going to be really fun this year because we’re still doing like the Christmas concert and the play and all that jazz. We’ve started singing several songs and we sound Ah-Maz-Ing already for being the “Quiet Class”. Our songs include:
Cross The Wide Missouri: Shenandoah/The Water Is Wide (Oooh! Pretty!)
Dodi Li (Our foreign language song, it’s Hebrew!)
The Gypsy Rover (Really easy and catchy)
One Great Nation (We’re doing a Veteran’s Day concert)
Band: Earlier this week, we had our first pass-off. It was for the Ab Scale, (That’s A flat; not abdominal muscle!). I was so worried that I would bomb it since this year, instead of playing for Mrs. Bumbarger in her office, we had to play it in front of everybody else in band. It was nerve-wracking. I saw one little 7th grader that was shaking and I felt so bad for her I just had to applaud for her and when I did, her face turned tomato-red! Anywho, I can’t remember what full concerts we have coming up next, but…We’re playing as the pep band for a Washington Wildcats Football Game!!! Woooo! That’s this friday. And, what’s cooler than that? It’s a secret, I’ll write about it tomorrow…
Here are a few of the pieces we’re playing in band right now;
Dynamite by Taio Cruz
Never Scared, Vice Versa, etc.(Pep rally music)
26 or 6 to 4 by Chicago (Ooooooh!!!!! This sounds really cool!!)
Uuuugh! Hurricane Isaac knocked out my power again all earlier this week! I just got it back on yesterday. Now, I shall finally talk some about school.
Well, since I only had two days of school this week, this post should be easy. I’m going to kind of summarize Thursday and Friday together.
History: All of the eighth graders get a chance to go to Washington D. C. over Spring Break! I don’t know that much about it, but since it’s such a gigantic deal, Mr. Horne decided to start talking about it this week. We got a little packet of information (which I haven’t read yet) and there’s supposed to be a parent meeting about it on the 11th.
Band: We got our first piece of music!!! It’s Dynamite by Taio Cruz and since most people know what this sounds like already, it sounds completely awesome!!!! Aaaaaand…….I’m 1st Clarinet now! Woo!!
Science: Boring. We had one of those pre-FCAT tests.
Chorus: We’ve just been doing little warm-up things ever since school started. Yesterday, though, we watched some of The Music Man because we had been singing Good Night, Ladies that day.
Lunch: Not much. I ate a sandwich.
Algebra: Algebra is so awesome! Math has always been such an easy subject for me and I must say, it’s still easy! Maybe even easier than last years’ 7th grade math! I was really kind of worried when they said I would be taking a high school class. I thought I would end up bombing it and ruining my overall grade-point-average. But, so far, it’s good!
Math Gaming: Not much. We still have this subsitute, Mr. Baldwin, that we’ve had since the first day of school. I just recently found out he was a sub, though. The real teachers name is Mrs. Egly…Can’t wait to see what she looks like!
Langugage Arts: We started a daily class read, where the teacher gets up and reads a little bit of a book every day. Right now, we’re reading Wonder by R. J. Palacio. It is really fascinating!
I still sit in the same spot on the bus as I have ever since 6th grade, right next to Tabitha and Mr. Rudolph the bus driver. And, they still have very weird conversations.
There were two parts to Dream Flags for me: the Night Performance and the Daytime one. I’ll start with the night one.
On April 30th at 6:00, it was rather nice outside, perfect for a band concert. Symphonic Band and the Beginning Chorus were the only groups performing that night. My band played Wind Chimes (UGH!), Cyrstal Moon, The Tempest, and The Rainbow Connection. The Beginning Chorus, that my brother was in, sang Fireflies by Owl City and this really get-stuck-in-your-head-song called Everlasting Melody. Nothing really exciting happened at the night one.
Much, MUCH more on the other hand, though, the Daytime performance on May 1st was not that good…
First off, the two groups performing at this one were the Symphonic Band again and my advanced Chorus, the Soaring Voices. So I had to keep running back and forth between the two and tripping on all of the wires that went to the speakers and microphones because the setlist went band chorus band chorus band chorus like eight times!!. Secondly, we had to perform three separate times: 1st, 2nd, and 6th period, which I admit would be the best times to have it since those are my least favorite classes. Except for the fact it was like 90 degrees all day!!! By the second performance, everyone was sweating like pigs in a bacon factory! I could just feel myself getting a huge sunburn, which thank goodness turned into an awesome tan after the next few days. With all of the heat it made the chorus and the band sound hideous. So hideous that in the third perfomance, band had to cut out two of their songs since nobody was playing them right at all. My chorus sung (sang??) How Can I Keep From Singing, DreamKeeper, and Seasons of… LO-O-O-O-O-OVE!!!!! The best part of the whole, entire performance was seeing Mrs. Woods, Ashton Woods, and this other lady do their annual poetry dream-themed rap thang. Wow it was absolutely spectacular and beautiful. Finally, I got to hear a ton of my buddies who got picked read out their Dream Flags poems. All of them were really good, especially one of the ESE kids’ poems about how when he grows up he’s going to run a barbeque restaurant and help save all of our town!
Since I have Chorus 7th period, right after Dream Flags, I got to help put all of the risers and stands and equipment away. After that, my whole class made a huge line that wrapped around the room twice to get to the water fountain. That was pretty much my Dream Flags Ceremony for this year and boy, I can’t wait for next year!
Band: Now there are only three third row clarinets in my band class, ever since two of them got promoted to a bass and a contra alto clarinet. Today was our 2nd pass-off of the year, Crystal Moon. I had to play from measure 13 to 21. I passed with flying colors!
Language Arts: We read more of our new book, Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse. This might be one of the most miserable books I’ve ever read. First her mother dies and they get into this freak accident. It’s absolutely terrible! I have no idea why my teacher picked this book. Hopefully it has some resolve in the end.
Science: My class did an experiment with cacti and African Violets. We were comparing root systems and how they are adapted to the two plants’ environments.
Chorus: I learned what the emergency was about. Yesterday when I came into class Mrs. Horne said there was some sort of emergency concerning Mr. Horne and everyone was in a panic. Soon she was running out of the classroom and we ended up having Mrs. Domulot as our substitute teacher. Today I heard from a few people that he had a crazy nose bleed and had to go to the emergency room at the hospital. So for our sub today we had this guy with slick black hair.
Geography: We finished (well, most people finshed) our project today where you had to invent your own country. Mine was called Fruit Island and the capital city was named Kiwi.
Over the next ten days I will be writing a lot.
You’re probably thinking, “Didn’t you just have one of these?” Actually, that was just our band MPA. The FPMS Soaring Voices (my chorus) have been preparing for this event for months. Ever since our Christmas concert! But since I’ve already explained the MPA shebang here, I’ll just give you the deal for the Chorus MPA.
Yesterday, we got our fancy, long, black, polyester, sequined, really low-cut dresses to wear as our girls’ uniforms. While the boys got to wear these really pretty tuxedo’s that made them look absolutely fine, in my opinion. You know, the kind with the pirate shirt and cumberbund. Also, the girls had to wear their hair up out of their face so that they wouldn’t play with it. Thank God Mrs. Horne wasn’t as strict as Mrs. Bumbarger, though because in band, we had to wear our hair, like, up up in a bun. But, in chorus we were allowed to wear ponytails so I did because I Hate wearing my hair up, especially in a bun. Buns make me feel like an old lady.
Our transportation to the Mrytle Grove Baptist Church was a simple school bus with a simple bus driver unlike the usual: a charter bus with a luxorious driver. But, I would actually much rather prefer the simple bus driver, so it was nice. When we stepped into the church, I couldn’t believe how quiet it was. We were the first choir there. Soon 4 other choirs showed up but, I’m not sure which schools they came from.
The first group to perform looked like they had kids from elementary and high school with them which was weird because I was pretty sure this was supposed to be an all middle school judging, but now I’m not sure. Their uniforms were maroon polo’s with black skirts and slacks. Classic attire. They were good.
Next was us. We properly marched into the warm-up room for about ten minutes then strode right back out to the stage in the auditorium of the church. With the light shining bright in our eyes, we looked down upon the Queen of Chorus, Mrs. Horne as she conducted us through our songs. The way we sang sounded more beautiful than all of our concerts and rehearsals put together. I could tell that everyone on the risers were really putting their all into this. It felt like we were all family. It felt glorious. After what seemed like only 30 seconds of Heaven we were already gracefully stepping off the risers back into our church seats. It was one of the best feelings I’ve ever experienced. I don’t think any word on this planet could decribe how I felt. Pure singing magic.
We listened to the next two choirs. My favorite part was when the one choir sang Battle of Jericho. They were really awesome sounding. After about an hour, we exited the building, loaded onto the bus, and headed back to FPMS.
When we got back to FPMS, the seventh graders had already missed their lunch so they had to eat with the eighth graders. After that, it was pretty much sixth period by the time everyone got done changing and eating. The rest of the day went on like nothing had ever happened.
Finally, the two songs we sung were Gloria Festiva and Ubi Caritas. Both are really good songs and I just loved singing them. There was only one judge this time and no sightreading. Very unlike the band MPA. But the good thing was the judge happened to be extremely nice and we got a…SUPERIOR!!!!!! Everyone started screaming on the bus when they heard this. Mrs. Horne was like, “We do NOT do that on the bus!!”
This concludes the Chorus MPA’s until next year.
Lots of things have been happening lately in chorus.
1) We are going to the MPA’s!!!!!
2) We’ve got some new music:
2.1 Gloria Festiva
2.2 Ubi Caritas
3) Mrs. Horne will be singing (and playing on the piano) the Phantom of the Opera!!!!!!!!!!!
4) We are participating in the Dream Flags Ceremony!!! And we will be singing…
Seasons of Love (from RENT)!!!!!!!