My Journey of Getting Off My Ass and Experiencing the Sounds of the World
Because of this title, I don’t want you to expect that I’m writing some August Rush type blog explaining that as I roamed New York City, I heard car horns, rain, residents’ nasty hollers, and the flipping of a newspaper, and all of those sounds created the most beautiful music, proving I was a musical prodigy! This will definitely not be the case, and if you have no idea who August Rush is, then just stop reading here, and go back to living your life sitting on your ass. Anyway, what I am talking about is the fact that for once I had to actually seek local music in the world, and I was completely stuck. I blamed it on the fact that I had very few friends, I never really went anywhere besides school, and ultimately cursed myself for living the life of a homebody thus far. As my professor said, while I was internally having a mental breakdown, it’s incredible that we could name thousands of famous musicians–musicians that have sold thousands and millions of albums, and are super famous–yet we probably could never see most of them actually play live. But when it comes to local musicians, we not only don’t know of any, we can’t even find them. I was saddened to be a part of this group, but then he mentioned that live music could be many different forms, and that’s when a light bulb flickered in my tiny Hispanic head. Whether it’s a local pub, or park, subway station, school play, even an event in your community, music can be found anywhere, and that’s what became my goal: find the music around me.
The first place I looked was my school, a place where I usually don’t participate due to the fear of being social and speaking with people. You can tell how amazing my personality is, huh? Well, once I searched for an event that could have music involved, I found out about the Spring Showcase. This showcase brought students from both the Music Department and Theater Department, who wanted to share to live audiences their passion for acting and singing. In fact, the goal of the creators were to forge dance, music and theater in hopes of showing us the direction one can bring them too. What was to come definitely did not disappoint and it left me feeling less than smart for never being a part of a performance like this, or at least simply visiting one. The first performance included students creating a melody using a guitar, banjo, tap dancer, and a singer that wonderfully blended in with such instruments as she sung ooo’s and aahh’s. The second performance blew me away as numerous dancers danced to the rhythm of a ticking clock and their own words. The way they created this type of music made it possible to flawlessly tell well-known stories of oppression that took place throughout history, ultimately questioning the fate of the future. The last group of performers ended the show by singing various songs from various Broadway musicals, many that I recognized and struggled not to join in on. From educational to comical to enlightening, all of these performances had one major thing in common–powerful.
The second place I had the opportunity to find music was my Alma mater’s high school musical, which I conveniently was invited to. All throughout my high school years, I was involved in everything theater and music related, loving every minute of it. I starred in numerous shows and played with different bands from Symphonic Band to Chorus to Jazz Band. I sung, danced, acted my heart out for four years in the world of performing, and I only knew how amazing it was that I could still come back and see what other students were doing, and the talent they embodied. The annual musical did not disappoint. Enacting their take on the famous musical Cabaret, the students brought this era where Nazis were rising to power, nightlife grew at the seedy Kit Kat Klub, and cabaret performers’ lives ensued in drama, to life. Coincidentally, the musical was based off of the performance of cabaret, a style of music, dance, and theatre, that emerged from France in the 19th century. Sound familiar? Side note: the most well-known things to come out of the start of cabarets were cabaret clubs Le Chat Noir and Moulin Rouge, and burlesque dancing, all of which you probably heard of. All in all, the cast and crew of Cabaret successfully captured the ambiance of a cabaret club with amazing vocals, enthusiastic dances, and talented musicians (trumpets, saxophones, drums, pianists, violinists, trombones, etc.) that did well to bring to light that signature cabaret jazzy feel.
If there’s one thing I would want you to get out of this story is that you should try your hardest to experience all the music the world–or simply your city–has to offer. Music influences, livens, strengthens people and it’s something you should want in your life everyday. Music is a big part of my life. I mean if I work hard enough, I could go into musical theater. But that passion for music starts with searching for it. So, get off your lazy ass and search for it already. If you want a minute to think about it, in the meantime, enjoy these hilarious memes about music that we can all relate to. I sure as hell laughed my ass off!