Making Memories

We have finally finished the two-week run here. And it was remarkable to say the least. So many good memories were made both on a personal level and a musical level. The show really came together [for the scenario the Theater department was in] and I really can not express how grateful I am to have been a part of it.

I felt as if I became more sensitive to people around me, not just in the pit orchestra. I also felt as if I gained some knowledge about different genres of music–specifically both Gospel and Country. After all, that is mostly what the show was. It was weird to learn Gospel at first because it is something you really have to feel. Country was much more simpler than I thought, however, if you play it wrong–everyone knows.

And I just would mention that our MD (music director), Jill, literally came to direct and put together this musical a week before opening night. Usually, it takes months to put any play like this together. And she was so patient with all of us. Jill inspired me these past three weeks because she understood what “hard work” really is, and how you feel after you put in the hard work.

I just wish more people in this world would understand the amount of effort and dedication it takes for someone like Jill, to put an almost 3 hour musical together in less than a week. No one has any idea. And this should not go unnoticed.

No athlete can understand. No business CEO will understand. No one can understand  unless you actually do it and see it. No one works more harder than Mike, Jill, Larry, and the list goes on and on. It needs to show us how hard musicians work and how people just take us for granted rather than appreciate the contributions we make to society. If it was not for music, art and theater, there would be no society.

And I finally admit that most times, it does take a village to raise its people.

And my respect for Jill takes me to this post.

I recently read a very good post on Facebook from a former middle and high school music teacher, now worldwide leadership coach. You can read it here:

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Band Isn’t Fun Anymore.

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He wrote about how band can get hard, how band is not always fun, and why.  While I agree with many points, I personally disagree with one key point: I remember an enormous amount of things from that were fun! In fact: ALL I remember are the good times and really do not remember anything being bad at all.  Was it awesome all the time? Heck no! Although, I made some phenomenal memories! I always do!

I understand the point that Scott’s post was trying to make: The memories we make in music will overshadow everything else because of life lessons we learn.

That is spot on!

For me, I remember the good. I remember the positives in my life. I do not remember the bad; I really do not because I quickly erase them from memory. I suppose if I sat down and focused upon, I would be able to come up with some instances of “bad.” However, in retrospect: THOSE are the stories that my friends and I talk about and laugh about. In fact, we recall those memories until we are laughing ourselves into tears.

And that is the lesson I took from working with Jill this week.

So wait Drew, what exactly was her lesson?

Well, read these negatives:

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  • Remember waiting to play between numbers during tech week?
  • Remember when our monitors were not working and we hardly heard anything?
  • Remember when it was so cold in the pit that we were shivering?
  • Remember when ….. ? … and on and on and on.

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So each one of the above bullet points by itself is a negative. If you add a follow-up statement to it, you change the negative into a positive memory you will carry with you forever.

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  • … and we were laughing about how everyone else in the pit had drum set cues while I did not even have those cues in my book?
  • … and Larry yelled “Okay humans continue on” and we butchered the opening part to “On My Way” because we forgot to count?
  • … and we had layered clothing but we played through anyway?
  • … and we all turned each page together, in sync, to begin erasing our marks in our pit music?

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Even the so-called “bad memories” are remembered fondly!

Why? Because it was us who made them.

So with that, Jill taught me that whatever our “bad things” are in life, the “bad” teaches us the life lessons we carry with us to this day. We become stronger because of them. We learn to overcome adversity. We learn that we can push through what we once considered a limitation in order to succeed!  These were not only the points of this very nice article, rather what Jill taught me that will forever be a guiding principle.

And after finishing the last show for Violet, I now understand that we remember the good in life and we learned from the “bad” however as I said, I do not remember the bad at all. We made memories from the good and the bad because of what changed and changes our lives “for good.”

And in this case, music does changes our lives … and will always.

Thank you everyone for a great production.

And thank you to those people who happened to come see it. Love you all!

And Jill, thank you for everything.

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