This morning in extended advisory was a spontaneous happening. Because rooms are at a shortage for advisory, we meet in the middle school drama room where there is a small stage. One of my advisees is a theater tech person so knows how to do all the lights and sound. A couple of my advisees are involved in an Indian dance performance this weekend and I asked them if they might share some of their choreography with us. JM got the lights all setup, the house lights down, and put their music on the speaker system. When we were studying the Constitution, both of the dancers were challenged by remembering all the intricacies of our system of government. On stage, however, they were incredibly fluent and fluid with every detail of a very complex choreography. We were transported.
Then SB decided to share just the first ten minutes of a 17 minute song he had memorized, the “Dwarven Song of Old Wealth,” from The Hobbit, the book not the movie, that some young person had set to music in a youtube video. His voice was sweet and soft and tenor, so different from the loud and bold personality that he broadcasts every day in class.
BC went to get a saxophone from the band room and DS went to get a cello. BC shared the first part of a piece he is working on–David Sanborn’s “Straight to the Heart” –mellow, serious, and complicated– unlike his very playful and mischievous self. DS played a version of Vivaldi’s “La Cinquantaine.” She has a hard time sitting still in class, always fidgeting, but today she was focused and serious, and as expressive on the cello as she is in conversation. EL was only able to play the first part of Beethoven’s Klaviersonata opus 31 #2, on the piano that is in the drama room. He’s still learning it, his piano playing just one more manifestation of the many ways he is gifted. Then it was time for first period.
I’m not sure that if I had solicited all these performances today, if I had planned for this showcase to occur, that it would have been as powerful and enchanting as it was. There was a bit of magic in the willingness of all to participate, both as audience and as performers. There was also magic in the focus, sincerity, and vulnerability of the performers willing to share with all of us the side of them that we barely ever have an opportunity to see.
The best way to stay warm on a very cold winter day.