Sunday, November 7, 2010

Memory, Leg-Breaking, Heels, and Sherbet

New member Ari Susu-Mago '13 on our
Family Weekend Concert


Like many things in the not-so-distant past, my memories of my first YGC concert are still fairly fresh (as far as memories go), but enough time has passed that they have distilled themselves into discrete moments; these pockets of clear recollection are surrounded by a fuzzy knowledge of what happened in between these moments (there's rather a difference between knowing that you hung out in the Woolsey rotunda and actually remembering every facet of the experience). Thus, I'm going to focus on the beads of clear memory I've strung together and gloss over the spaces between them, because...well, because I can't recall them clearly. And that's probably because they weren't interesting enough to be worth remembering, so you're not missing anything either way.

ANYHOW, I remember...

...walking into Hendrie on the night of the concert and being abruptly conscious of how well-dressed everyone looked (except for the fact that, as Adam pointed out during his pep talk, that the women's dresses do tend to make us look more similar than, say, svelte and snazzy like the men's tuxes). Maybe I didn't really notice the clothes at the dress rehearsal because I'm a bit fashion-blind (entirely feasible), or perhaps because a space like Woolsey seems to demand fancy clothes in a way that Hendrie does not. Either way, that evening actually felt like the first night we'd dressed up.

...Adam's pep talk about what makes singing with the Glee Club such a special performing experience, as well as his (and his mother's) admonishment that we all break all of our legs.

...standing at the back of Woolsey, listening to the band playing, and worrying about all the wrong things. And what are the wrong things to worry about before a concert? I can't give a comprehensive list, but a brief sample might include: that the basic tacking I'd done wouldn't be enough to keep my dress hemmed, or that I would drop my Yale gear while running onstage, or that the heels of my shoes would catch in the grating and cause me to faceplant into the carpeted aisle. (For the record, none of these events occurred, a fact that is not due to my having worried about them.)

...that shimmering, soap-bubble-of-a-moment at the end of Abendlied, when we'd all stopped singing but the sound continued to float in the air. If anyone asked me why I sing in choirs, I'd probably answer with, "Because I love it." If they asked me why I loved it, this is the sort of example I would give. Same goes for that awesome, ringing final chord of My Soul's Been Anchored in the Lord. "Why do you sing in choirs, Ari?" "Because it just sounds so damn cool."

...the faintly-agonizing walk back to Hendrie in heels after the concert. This one still puzzles me, as I've done a ton of musical theatre and choir in my life and am not unused to wearing character heels for long periods of time---yet it was with the most profound relief that I was able to plop down on a chair in the rehearsal room and removed the accursed things from my poor, bruised feet. Maybe I'm just out of practice wearing tall shoes...or perhaps I'll re-hem my dress so I can wear flats for the Princeton and Harvard concerts. We'll see.

...under the expert tutelage of John Clayton, becoming a volunteer YGC-punch-brewing sherbet-meister. Mmm, sherbet in punch.

In summary:

To the YGC: thanks for a great first concert at Yale!
To Adam: I apologize for having failed at breaking my legs this time around. Maybe this can be rectified by wearing stilettos while running up to the stage, or through the judicious application of a baseball bat to the tibias?
To John (and the punch): More lemon sherbet. Always, more lemon. 'Nuff said.