Monday, July 16, 2007

Published 10:38 AM by with 1 comment

Guitar Camp

I just got back from guitar camp week, and I can't even describe how amazing it was. Every year I fall in love with the guitar all over again, and it gets better and better each time. The talent some of the kids have is mind-boggling!

The kids at camp have so much potential, not just in music, but in life: fourteen year old Alec, too short for his age, finally showing some guts on the very last night by standing up to the other boys when they picked on him... little Rachel, deciding to be strong "like all the other girls" instead of going to her father for everything... teen-aged Ryan, being himself, completely wacky and goofy and as
talented as he pleased instead of holding back in case someone thought he was weird... Tommy, nailing his ensemble music on the final concert and counting his rhythms perfectly after some tears and hours of work... awkward Mark, working his butt off to compete, and holding his head high with a second place award... and Eliot, probably the most incredible young man I've ever known, throwing his shyness away during the final round of the competition and holding the audience in the palm of his hand with the Tristango by Pujol...

Hmm. I'd better stop there before I get too poetic. Other cool things that happened at camp was me teaching at least five of the boys how to waltz, swimming on the last day, having delicious vegetarian alternatives provided by the camp cooks (!!!!), getting hugs from everyone all the time (I never get enough hugs), my ensemble of ten
little boys sounding horrible on their last rehearsal but pulling together and sounding GREAT at the concert, juggling every day until my arms were too sore to lift above my head, staying up late with the adults, canoeing (did I spell that right?) twice, drinking quite too much rootbeer, and best of all, not being afraid to ask questions and learn how to teach better by observing the other teachers, and
being able to teach master classes and an ensemble by myself and learn from my mistakes for next time.

"Without change, we would just be stale bread."

"My cats act far too dignified, considering the lazy life they lead."

"We speak to our students in the language of the moon."

"If it's true that I can't count my music correctly, then just tell me!"

"Blackberries?! Where???"

"I guess you can still play 'Gypsy Teens' with the ensemble...but only for one more month, because then you'll be twenty."

Eliza: "Eliot, are you asleep? Okay, guys, he's asleep...isn't Eliot the CUTEST kid ever?"
Eliot: "Um...I'm not asleep."

"I do NOT look like Harry Potter!"

"I'm not so much nervous of playing in the competition, but I'm nervous to go home. I look forward to camp so much every year that when it finally happens, I don't realize what's going on until it's over."

These are some of the notable quotes from camp. I'm sure there are more, but I don't remember them all now.

It's back to reality for me. I'm working every day at the music department, teaching in the evenings, practicing my guitar, talking to Mozart-Man on the phone every night, cooking new recipes, and juggling a lot. Only one month of summer left! Where has the time gone?
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