2015 Impulse: Auditions #1 Feb 8th

The day started with donuts, as most mornings should. There was a variety and Vee asked me what kind I wanted;  I said for her to surprise me. She handed me a long dark one. I am going to assume no unconscious Freudian thought influenced that choice. HotCakes likes sprinkles on his donut.

After picking up Karen we got Ari, and they got donuts 😀

We got to Marina and I see the equipment truck and various cars with people sitting inside them. Entering the bandroom, Byron Baba greets me with a smile. Other adults are busy setting up tables, etc. for sign-ins and such for the start of this day’ s business of drum corps in Huntington Beach. After a pit stop, I re-enter the band room from the back and share a moment with Mr. McGilligan. The room has filled up and I spot an empty chair near the front and I move to grab it 🙂

People that needed to speak, spoke to the masses. (I later told Larry I would never introduce him as the guy that drives the truck. I would introduce him as the guy that makes THE MAGIC happen.) I then directed the auditionees to the front grassy area for warm ups. Following them to see how they get themselves started I positioned myself near but away. One of the new percussion staff persons approached me and we chatted.

Kyle, new guy, was asking lots of great questions about the gig. Which was great, but I had lots of questions for him also 😀 We both quickly determined we are already on the same page about a lot of ideas in terms of how to approach instruction and what are the intended outcomes. We teach, we evaluate, we design instruction, we implement,  we observe, we re-evaluate; it’s a process continuously checking their progress towards the given goal. The overall goal is a positive educational experience,  through music and movement.

(Fernando, another new percussion staff guy, got there as I was leaving. I watched and listened a little as he and Kyle talked throughout the morning about coordinating their caption. They both watched the battery throughout the morning vizh block. Much as I go and observe others during sectional time 🙂 )

I head out to the field with Shayy and we talk about this, that, and the other. We stop at the bungalows and I finalize in my mind what the rest of the morning will look like. Battery gets there; we chat briefly and then I send them on a small task whilst I travel to the basketball courts.

First, I sent the cymbals off to do cymbal stuff, and be back in 20 minutes. (WHAT HAPPENED THERE!!!) The rest gathered and I talked with them about fundamentals and universal truths. I address the issue that in my opinion is critical to their immediate and long term achievement, and that is they need to figure out leadership ASAP. Turns out like about three quarters of them are section leader at their school. As I eased them into activity, my confidence in them grew, in regards to their innate leadership.

As they got into the exercises,  their individual confidence increased, so they started looking smarter. It’s still early, but they are already testing my patience 🙂 The block ended well and I expressed to them my gratitude for demonstrating an acceptable level of performance thus far. I headed over to the field and got there as the brass had just finished their block.

Lunch was awesome, as usual 😀 Carol and Tom stepped up this week. Tom clowned me 😀 “A good time to talk to Ray is when his mouth is full.” In all honesty and seriousness,  I have learned, and I’m still learning a lot from that man, and all the adults that come and give their time to help and support Impulse.

I listened to the front ensemble some; just going to leave that thought there. Watched and listened to the horns. Louie and Aldo did individual auditions while Zach did exercises with the hornline. At the end of the block, Aldo led the horns through a few more exercises.  I was very impressed, and told him later, with Aldo’s enthusiastic and effective instruction (and he has the teacher look, in a good way.)

Lots of good stuff. Lots to improve on.

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