Wednesday, May 16, 2012

The Siren's Call of the Saxophone

This post has nothing to do with books.  It has to do with band. And, well, orchestra I guess.

I have two daughters who have both been musical children. I won't tell you their ages but I am much too young to have had them. Both play piano but we have reached the grade in school when they can choose a band or orchestra instrument. They have this special day at school where they demonstrate all of the instruments and then each kid can choose 3 to try. The music director sends home recommendations for what instrument they recommend for your child next year.

When my oldest daughter reached this age, she wanted to play the saxophone and lo and behold she we recommended for the saxophone. I gleefully trotted down to the music store to rent a saxophone with images of Lisa Simpson dancing through my head. Imagine my surprise when they gave me the list of rental prices for instruments.  $50/month people!  Sax's are expensive.

I noticed that the flute was like $15/month, the violin $20.  I concocted a conspiracy theory that the band director recommended the expensive brass to all the oldest children that came through, hoping to snare unsuspecting parents into paying for the "money pit" instrument. For my oldest, it was too late.  We'd already said yes. I signed on the dotted line and Saxophone she played.

For 6 months.  She lasted 6 months and then she quit. And BTW that was 6 months of hauling that monster on the bus and practice sessions that sounded like geese homicide every night.

Well, that wasn't going to happen to ME again.  I was older and wiser.  I started my younger daughter on violin in third grade.  She excelled.  Played for two years.  I rubbed my hands together thinking she would surely want to continue the violin into fifth grade.  Ha ha ha.  They wouldn't get me again!

Imagine my horror when younger one began making noises about quitting violin and guessed it...saxophone!  I said NO! Pick something else.  Anything!

My neighbor even helped me out.  She said they had a used oboe we could buy for cheap.  You know what they say about the oboe?  It's the scholarship instrument.  First oboe, then bassoon, then free college baby.  Nobody plays the bassoon.  It was brilliant!  No rental.  No dying goose.  I was so on board.

So youngest has the dreaded demonstration/recommendation night and guess what comes home on her paper.  Saxophone!  And now she's totally excited and completely dead set on Saxophone.

I think I know what's going on here.  Obviously, they have some cute boy demonstrating saxophone. I'll never win.  They've played the hormone card.  It's useless to resist.

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