Thursday, October 6, 2011

Music in my heart

Last night I went and saw Phantom of the Opera, the 25th Anniversary performance, which was taped live from the Royal Albert Hall in London. It was SPECTACULAR. Ramin Karimloo played the Phantom, and he was so good it was breathtaking. I have been a fan of his for a long time, ever since I saw him do this and this. But as the Phantom....he was spectacular. Sierra Boggess played Christine and she is hands down the BEST Christine I have ever seen, heard, or dreamed up. I ADORED her performance. Her vocals were unnaturally good and her acting brought tears to my eyes. Turns out I loved her before I even knew who she was, because I have been in love with this, so it was just an awesome treat for me to see her in this role. What was a true revelation was the man who played Raoul, Hadley Fraser. Now, in the film version of the film, Raoul always seemed a teeny bit simpering to me, but I still liked him and wanted to Christine to go with him. But when I saw Hadley's version of GOSH, I was in love. And quite possibly legitimately so. He was soooooo good, and I do not think he got enough credit for the brilliance of his performance. So I guess you could say that I loved the show...... You know what was awesome? Having the camera close enough that we could see their faces. As much as I adore live shows, I always wish I had a better view of faces. So this was just perfect for me. Aide from the complete lack of a crashing chandelier [can't blame them for that....Royal Albert Hall is not exactly a good place to crash a chandelier], there wasn't a single thing I would have wished could be different. Well....maybe a different Meg. But she doesn't really do anything, so that's okay.
I have a problem, though. Every time I am exposed to some brilliant musical performance, I feel this agonizing twinge. I love music on a level that is so deep, it is engraved on my soul. Sounds dramatic, but it's true. And I have always wished that I had pursued the musical side of me with more vengeance, with more passion. But I am just insecure enough to not even attempt something if I doubt I can do it.
I have played the piano since I was a kid. I had the most amazing teacher, who taught me to love and appreciate music in a way I had never imagined. I had always loved Disney movies and the music from them and I grew up adoring Julie Andrews in Mary Poppins and the Sound of Music. I always wanted music on in the car and singing was my favorite part of church. I played the flute in the 5th and 6th grade band in my elementary school.When we found out we were moving, I was crushed. I was just getting to a fun level with piano and flute, and junior high school had choir, which I wanted to try, though I really didn't think I could sing, but it would be fun. But I decided that I would try out for choir with the other kids in my class, even though I was moving, just to see if I could make it. I would also try out for Jazz Band, to see if I would make that. When we moved, I would do which ever organization I would have made at  my old school. Turns out I did not make Jazz Band. But we got a phone call from one of the choir directors at the junior high to inform us that not only had I made it into choir, but I made the advanced choir. Since our family was not particularly musical, outside of piano lessons, we were pretty surprised. But I did choir when we moved, and never stopped. But sometimes, when I am feeling sorry for myself, I wonder what would have happened if I had stayed. What if I had been able to do the "advanced" choir in 7th grade? Would my training have been better? Would my voice be something impressive? What would I have been confident enough to do if I had that? But 'what if's get us nowhere, right? Right. Moving on.
I was once told that I had a good choir voice. I have no idea what that meant, but to me it said "Don't sing without other people" and very rarely have I strayed from that. I wish I hadn't listened. I wish I had done more musicals in high school. Sure, it would have been tough with swimming, but I would have loved that. I should have done that.
The best compliment I have ever received was when someone who is not particularly musical, but enjoys good music in his own way, said to me after a rather harrowing [on my part] duet in church with a friend, "Becky, I had no idea you could sing like that." I will never forget the glow that spread through me as I heard that. I wish I had tried harder so I could have heard more things like that, not to puff me up or give me an ego, but to boost  me, to reinforce that I could actually do what I loved because I was good at it.
This sort of melancholic musing happens every time I see a show that strikes me. Some have suggested I stop going to shows if this is what is going to happen. I can't do that. I just can't. It's kind of like my addiction, I guess.
Anyways, I hope I didn't sound whiney in here. That wasn't my point. I just wanted to get today's feelings out, and they happen to be a little self-pitying at the moment. Let me just say this: I know that I CAN sing, I just wish I was better, not for acclaim or notoriety, but so that I could be more comfortable with it. I would love to be able to sing in shows and in church and anywhere else without freaking out about it. Maybe I just need to take a little lesson from Sierra, huh?
Sigh. If onlys and what ifs are my weakness, guys. I know I could have and should have done so many things, but I let my own fears and doubts and the opinions of others dictate my actions. Don't do that. Be true to yourself. Do what YOU want to do, and don't let anybody tell you that you can't. Work hard and give it your best, and who knows? You just might get it. Miracles happen every day.
Hingsight is 20/20.
Okay, time to say something happy........uh.......Tomorrow is Friday! Woohoo!
PS. I am wearing gray knee socks with fuzzy spiders on them. That is awesome.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Thoughts of the Day

...or of the moment, at least. I can't promise these will still be my thoughts later. Some of them will be, but I dunno about others.
  • General Conference was this weekend. If you don't know what that means, it's a special conference that is held twice a year for the general membership of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Our leaders speak to us on topics that they have felt inspired to, and it is one of the most uplifting weekends ever. If you want to know more, click on the nifty little button on my sidebar that says "I'm a Mormon", or just shoot me a message! But this conference was really special. I felt so uplifted.
    • President Uchtdorf's talk in the General Relief Society meeting was FANTASTIC! It literally took my breath away. I will read this one again and again and again.
    • At the very end of conference, when the prophet was speaking, at one point he just said, "I love you. I pray for you." Now, we hear that sometimes, but for some reason, this time it really touched me. Maybe it was the way he said it, with such sincerity and emotion, or maybe it's because I was trying really hard to pay attention this time, or maybe it is just because he is the prophet of the Lord and can do that. Whatever reason, I got choked up myself and I had it confirmed to me AGAIN that this man is truly God's prophet here on the earth today.
  • Along with that, I just love the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. I really really just adore them a lot. Who could help it? They are truly spectacular. Now, I am a bit of a hymn junkie, in that there are several hymns that I truly love, if they are done well. But there are some things that the Tabernacle Choir sings that are just turned into gold, and I am convinced that angels in Heaven are singing. Go here and here and here and here for examples. There are so many, many more, but I think that will suffice for now. December I will have more. =)
  • It's October now. I LOVE October. I love the changing of the leaves, I love the smell of leaves burning, I love jumping into piles of leaves [but NEVER with a wet sucker]. I love Halloween. I love the cooler weather and drinking hot chocolate and cider. I love the pumpkin flavor things. Basically, I love October.
  • My sister and I have been playing Scrabble on Facebook. Normally, I am opposed to games on Facebook, but this is Scrabble. I think it's brought us closer together, right, sis? Bah hahaha, yeah, right. Most of the time we are arguing about fake words that they say are real words and real words that they say are fake. But still, it's awesome. We'll have to play real scrabble when she comes home.
  • Someone brought Olive Garden into work today for us. I may have hijacked a handful of Ande's mints from the pile. Maybe.
  • My life coach is having a baby right now. Like right now right now. Well, she's in LABOR right now, anyway. Sounds like the little guy is being stubborn. Hang in there, Shay!
  • I have an obsession with baby names. Have had since I was about 13. It's bad.
  • I need to get going on grad school stuff. Gotta get those apps done so I can get back to life as I know it! Or...brain capacity as I know it, anyway.
  • I get to see Carly next weekend! And baby Deux, I suppose, but he/she won't really be able to play very much. And then I see Jenny the week after that, and then AGAIN the week after that and THEN I get to go to Cincy for an intense high school football game! GO EAST!
  • My mommy made pumpkin sugar cookies with candy corn faces. I felt like a kid again. In all the best ways. Except I didn't get dough this time. Oh well. Christmas is coming.
    • I almost spelled 'sugar' with an H just then.
  • Christmas is coming. It really really is. I may or may not have bought my first Christmas present already. Maybe.
I think that'll do for now. I try not to have too many thoughts in one day. It clogs things up.
Except for this last one: PHANTOM OF THE OPERA TONIGHT!!! Thanks to my love for movies, I occasionally will check listings at our theaters to see what is playing. Lo and behold, one of them had an advert on the sidebar that was for a showing of a live performance of Phantom of the Opera for a special 25th Anniversary show at the Royal Albert Hall in London. I think I bought tickets for it the day I saw the advert. I am SO EXCITED!!!!!
Can you tell?