Sunday, November 23, 2003

The Not-So-Marathon

We did it...we put on a jazz concert featuring all four groups and managed to make it not seem like it lasted forever (despite the tickets saying "A Jazz Marathon").

I was very happy with the concert overall; all the groups played well, there were a lot of people there (even the balcony was opened, and it was nearly half-full), and it went by pretty quickly, considering that I was onstage for three of the four groups. The only thing mildly aggravating was the soundcheck, where the mosty "adult" Combo PM seemed to have more "ADD moments" in their session than the all-student Combo Too did--forgetting the order of soloists, stopping at random, that kind of stuff. It was the same thing I'd gotten onto Combo Too about on Thursday, but this time it was the older folks who were a little out of it at first. Yet all those moments disappeared when the spotlights were on and the house was full.

One quick disclaimer here, in case anyone reading this is offended by my referring to mental lapses as "ADD moments": I have it too. I'm sure of it, even though there's never been a clinical diagnosis. They didn't know nearly so much about it when I was a kid, so I didn't have to be medicated all through high school, but I'm pretty sure that I have it, as do many musicians and other artistic types. (Incidentally, there is a great comic strip from a few weeks ago that talks about this. The strip is Pearls Before Swine, and the basic premise is that if they'd been able to diagnose ADD when some of the great musicians of all time were around, nobody would have been nearly so creative, and we would have been stuck with...well, I'll let you read it yourself to discover the punch line. Oh yeah, and someone wrote in to the paper last week blasting the comic for being 'insensitive' and suggesting that all kids with ADD should be heavily medicated (ack). Besides, it would have been worse if I'd blamed Combo PM's soundcheck troubles on "senior moments," seeing as how some of the members are, as I said last night, "over 35." Heh heh.)

But I any rate, the concert went great and nobody seemed to think that it felt very long either (like, for example, Fizban's parents, who said that the one last spring nearly did them in). Part of the credit for that could go to the limitations on numbers of tunes and soloists, but I think that the fact that everyone played so well made it go faster also. We've really raised the bar, and I'm especially happy for Combo Too, which may have been set up as the "learning combo" but did a performance that at least equaled the other groups...I guess they've learned, and then some. I told the audience that this was the best edition of that group I've ever had (and this is my seventh year to direct it). All in all, a great night.

And afterwards, we had the traditional hang at Chili's, which included the usual cast of misfits (Demon Matt, Demon Halfling and Gold Dingus showed up for the concert), where we ate a long-awaited dinner and taunted Fizban some more about being in the Friend Zone (especially when an evidently "hot" girl--I didn't see her, can't pass judgement--approached him after the concert and gave him her number). It got really bad when Gold Dingus's girlfriend was even giving him grief about the FZ. Since I'm not even in the FZ myself at the moment (d'oh), I won't say much else about that.

At any rate, a really busy part of the semester is over; there are a few more performances left to go, but this will make next week's break seem even more relaxing now.

(Oh yeah, and Red Dingus has his own post about last night, including the whole story of the little set of groupies who came to support him. We promptly dubbed them "The Dingettes.")

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