You know you’re in Florida when you start your day with an ocean swim, a walk on Vero Beach, a viewing of Michael Haycock’s sand-shark, and a breakfast accompanied by fresh-squeezed orange juice. This is the life.
Our big expedition this morning was to the Manatee Observation center in nearby Fort Pierce. Sadly, manatees were in short supply. We did get to see seahorses and turtles, though, and we found out from Molly that the gestational period of a manatee equals the amount of time that she and Emily have been planning this tour (13 months). Stuffed manatee toys in hand, we walked into Fort Pierce for lunch. I ate with seven other YGCers, and our waitress first thought we were professional singers and then that we were all trying out for American Idol. She was gracious enough not to appear too disappointed when we turned out to be regular old Yalies.
The day only got better when we headed back to the St. Edward’s School for a short performance in front of the middle and high schoolers, followed by a rehearsal and our first concert of tour! St. Edward’s is a beautiful place (lots of open courtyards and red-tiled roofs) and their performing arts center is stunning. The St. Edwards staff was also incredibly welcoming; we were all shocked when we walked into the gym for dinner and found a dinner buffet and tables decorated with flower-filled vases.
The concert itself was a promising start to tour. O Quam Gloriosum and Ye Shall Have a Song are two of my favorite pieces this year, and I though they were particularly beautiful at our concert. The Football Medley also had a great momentum, and the audience got involved in the cheering (of Yale) and the booing (of Harvard). Onstage, we struggled to keep from laughing at Casey Klippel’s unique ode to Harvard—a blaring off-key note blown on a borrowed trumpet after we sang “Goodnight, Poor Harvard.”
There’s a rhythm to these days and nights of traveling and singing together that makes each tour a special part of the Glee Club year. If today is any indication, we have a lot to look forward to during the remainder of our stay in Florida and the DR.
Song of the day: "Round Round Get Around" by the Beach Boys
Favorite moment: When students from Daniel Koh’s choir at St. Edwards joined us onstage to sing The Road Home (which they sang last week at their senior baccalaureate).
Tomorrow, 5/27: Sarasota, concert at Church of the Redeemer at 7:30 pm