I love music, I just can’t play it or sing it. In fact, as my father points out every time I attempt to hum a few bars, I’m tone-deaf. That however, does not stop me from appreciating great music, and I got to do just that as a chaperone for Olivia’s field trip to Davies Symphony Hall, where the San Francisco Symphony played for thousands of kids.
I always have mixed emotions chaperoning Olivia’s school events. On one hand, I like spying on her, and on occasion, like today, I actually enjoy the event. On the other hand, it means I have to interact with other people’s kids and other parents. You know the kids and parents I’m talking about, so I won’t go into detail, but suffice it to say I avoid them if at all possible, but on outings like these, there’s no getting away from them. We’re a public elementary school family, and since every public school is strapped for cash, parents drive on the field trips, and on this trip, one of those kids rode in my car. Let’s just say it was a long ride.
Going to today’s performance brought me back to my own field trip to Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis. Unfortunately, I don’t remember the music. I just remember feeling really sleepy one minute, only to wake up near the end of the show to a bunch of my classmates laughing at me. Fast forward to today, and it was completely different. The conductor, Donato Cabrera, talked to the kids instead of talking at them. He also explained how the different instruments make all sorts of cool sounds like the violins sounding like bees during the song, “flight of the bumblebee.” That really got Olivia’s attention because she’s been playing the violin for about a year. I’ll be honest, the first few months she was awful. It was painful to listen to every squeaky note. I’ll give her credit though, she stuck with it, and she can now play a mean “twinkle, twinkle little star,” as well as a few other familiar songs. The finale of the concert was the theme to “Star Wars,” which you can imagine was a huge hit, even for the kids who haven’t seen the movie. (That would include Olivia)
As much as I loved today’s performance, I saw one mom who was not as enthralled as I was. Apparently, I am not alone in having a loud symphony act as an Ambien pill. At one point during today’s concert, I heard a few kids laughing so I turned around, and saw this mom totally crashed out. I don’t think she was bored though, I just think this was the only break she could get, so she took advantage of someone else entertaining her kids. That’s one smart mom.