Author Topic: An unusual Gig...*S*  (Read 427 times)

Offline Medi

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An unusual Gig...*S*
« on: December 18, 2017, 01:03:37 AM »
...I just need to share this event in my life...I am sorry if I offend anyone...

I am a very good amateur classical musician, I am a cellist, and at my peak could play all Major Symphonies.  But, I mostly love chamber music.  We had a string quartet, and we got a lot of wedding gigs, they were fun, and we got paid well...and sometimes we got to eat with the guests.  One gig was not a wedding, but it was memorable.  Our First Violinist was in charge, she would set up the gigs, and we would show up.  *S*  She was older than us...and we just did what she told us to do.
 
I drove us up into the Sierra Foothills...and we played for a 'Pond Consecration'.  It was a very large Estate, and I parked the SUV where they told me, and we unloaded our instruments and music.  They told us to leave the cases behind, so we walked behind the guide, holding our 'children' (instruments) in one hand, and our music in the other.  (BTW...we were all dressed in 'Concert Black').  He led us to a large pond, and pointed at a raft in the middle, and said..."You will play there,"  and walked away.  We all looked at our First Violinist, and she pointed at a small rowboat, and said..."They will get us there."  She was right...they took us one by one to the raft, and we set up.

The gig was unusual...there were 16 young women in white robes standing around the pond, and sometimes singing as we played.  The violist and I were almost falling off the raft...we were trying to concentrate...but it was hard...but we played well and kept silent.  There were long breaks as they did things we didn't understand, and the Second Violinist saw that there was wine in flagons around the pond.  He would wade off...the pond wasn't deep...and bring one back to us and we would share.  We finished the ceremony, and they brought us all back and let us enjoy the Feast with them.  They were very nice people.

That was an unusual gig...*S*
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Offline RAGNAR

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Re: An unusual Gig...*S*
« Reply #1 on: December 18, 2017, 05:17:38 PM »
I would have checked out the fishing were it me. But then, percussionists ARE a breed unto themselves.  ;D 8)

Offline Medi

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Re: An unusual Gig...*S*
« Reply #2 on: December 18, 2017, 06:18:44 PM »
...Now, now, now, Rags...don't get me started on percussionists!... ;D...During a rehearsal with a very good community orchestra, one of the percussionists just couldn't get the castanets right in one of the 'Carmen' movements.  The Conductor stopped us all, and worked with him for 5 minutes...that is a LONG time during a rehearsal.  The cellist sitting next to me...who was English and was my private tutor...leaned to me and whispered...in a lovely English Accent..."A percussionist WITHOUT A SENSE OF RHYTYM?  He has NO reason to BE ALIVE!"  I started laughing, and got a MAJOR LEAGUE GLARE from the Conductor.  I did apologize to the Conductor at the break, and he just said..."OK".  I didn't tell him why I laughed.   :o  But, I do admire the percussion section.  During the halftime at a concert, I went to the snare drummer, and asked him..."How the HELL do you keep the beat so steady?"  We had performed 'Bolero'.  He just winked at me, and said, "That is a secret we drummers keep to ourselves." 
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Offline RAGNAR

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Re: An unusual Gig...*S*
« Reply #3 on: December 18, 2017, 10:24:18 PM »
He just winked at me, and said, "That is a secret we drummers keep to ourselves."

Well... we could tell you, but then we would have to kill you.  ;)

Offline Medi

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Re: An unusual Gig...*S*
« Reply #4 on: December 19, 2017, 12:53:31 AM »
...When we moved to a new town when we were newlyweds, I looked for an orchestra to join.  There was one pretty good one, we went to a concert, and I was impressed.  I contacted the Office afterwards, told them I was a cellist, and asked if I could audition.  They allowed me...and I did my best...and felt happy when I finished.  The Conductor came to me as I was packing up, and said, "The cello section is full, but we can use you in the percussion."  I had played a Hindemith Sonata for them...it was very rhythmic. I just said...'OK'.  I had taken a basic percussion course at the Conservatory...I figured..."No Problemo"  Well, I learned a lot more than I expected.  They had me set up the 'Kitchen' before each concert and rehearsal.  Hauling around drums and stands and getting the music in the right place was difficult...I got scolded more than once for an improper setup.  Of course I got the easiest assignments...I would count 79 measures rest before pounding on a drum...and then wait 63 measures for my next part.  They trusted me with a triangle...once...and took it away and I went back to my drum.  Triangles can be heard over the rest of the Orchestra.  Once they looked at me when they were assigning the cymbal part...and gave it to a HS kid...I went back to my drum.  I figured at the end of the season they would smile, and say..."Here are tickets for next season...and we always appreciate contributions."  But, it worked out well...a cellist was retiring and I sat outside chair, second stand, for the next few years.  Of course, the percussion leader would sometimes call out during a rehearsal..."We need help, send the Cellist."  I would just smile at Him, and resist the urge to 'flip Him off'.  It was a fun experience!
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Offline RAGNAR

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Re: An unusual Gig...*S*
« Reply #5 on: December 19, 2017, 05:42:40 PM »
LOL *Facepalms*

Offline siren{RgR}

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Re: An unusual Gig...*S*
« Reply #6 on: December 19, 2017, 08:22:21 PM »
That sounds so cool!  Would have loved to see it.
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Offline Medi

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Re: An unusual Gig...*S*
« Reply #7 on: December 20, 2017, 12:43:41 AM »
...It was a fun and interesting event, siren.  We were taken by surprise, but we really enjoyed it.   ;)  The Owner was an elderly Hollywood Movie Producer, I can't remember his name, but he was nice.  :D  He shook our hands, and smiled when we arrived...and then left to attend his guests.  As I described, he had an assistant watch over us, so we knew where to go, and the assistant did insist that we stay for the Feast, and so we did.  We ate the same as the Owners and all of the guests...and drank if we wanted.  (I was the driver, so I just had one glass of REALLY good white wine.)  It was a lot of fun, they actually had a pig and most of a steer rotating on two spits at different fire pits, and we all enjoyed standing in line, holding a plate, and telling the carvers what we wanted.  We chose to sit at a table where several of the young 'Pond Maidens' were sitting, and had a great time.  They said that what had happened was a 'Druid Thing', and that they had been rehearsed by the woman who had selected the music. They explained more of what some of the events meant, and we were impressed.  When we were done eating, the assistant came over and handed our First Violinist an envelope.  It had the check for the gig...and a fair amount of cash... :D  She divided the cash equally among us, and kept the check.   ;D  It was her practice to deposit the check for a gig...and after it cleared...would keep 5% for herself as an Administrative Fee...and the remainder would be equally split between the four of us.  Again, a nice gig... :)
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Offline Medi

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Re: An unusual Gig...*S*
« Reply #8 on: December 20, 2017, 11:34:12 PM »
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Offline RAGNAR

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Re: An unusual Gig...*S*
« Reply #9 on: December 21, 2017, 05:45:53 PM »
LOL

Forgot one...

"Who brought the beer?"

Offline Medi

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Re: An unusual Gig...*S*
« Reply #10 on: December 22, 2017, 12:58:08 PM »
...A tuba is the same as a string bass...I learned once.  I was playing cello in the pit orchestra for a Musical, it was a community production, although we all did get paid.  The Musical was 'Kiss Me Kate'.  I was the only cellist, and sat at the back of the pit, and the string bass player was cramped up behind me.  It was a long run, 8 weeks, and we all had fun...although I did have ONE REALLY BAD OUT OF  TUNE NOTE!... :P  I flipped off the keyboardest as I cooled down...he was laughing so hard...and so was the Conductor...I didn't flip off the Conductor...A Conductor is the 'Ubar of the Orchestra'.  Anyway, the Conductor came to me after the 4th week, and said, "We need a string bass for next week, Harvey has something going on."  I was a bit of a 'Concert Promoter' then, and he knew that I knew a lot of musicians.  I told him, "No Problemo", I knew 8 string bass players...I was sure one would be available.  Well, I was WRONG! :o  They all had other committments, and the players they suggested also were unavailable.  I was miserable...I didn't want to have to call the Conductor and say..."I failed". I then got a BRILLIANT IDEA!  I called a tubist I knew, and he said, "Sure".  The LOOK on the Conductors face was PRICELESS when he saw a tubist sitting at the string bass seat.  I just held up my hands, and whispered..."Best I could do"... ::)...This was a performance, not a rehearsal... :o   But, as I knew, it went very well.  The tubist fit very well with us, and the performance was nice.  The Conductor shook the tubists hands with his...I think the Conductor had had a 'near death' experience.  He told the tubist..."You can join us any time."  Later, the Conductor told me..."Don't you EVER substitute instruments again without GETTING MY PERMISSION!" >:(  But then he laughed, patted my shoulder, and said..."Good job!"   :)  I still, to this day, think it was a BRILLIANT IDEA!   ;D
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Offline RAGNAR

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Re: An unusual Gig...*S*
« Reply #11 on: December 22, 2017, 06:36:46 PM »
I would have gotten him a gorilla costume to wear just for shock value. *EG*

Offline Medi

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Re: An unusual Gig...*S*
« Reply #12 on: December 23, 2017, 02:03:39 AM »
...I think that is a GREAT SUGGESTION Rags!  I will do so if I ever get the opportunity again. ;D  I will rent the costume, and tell the tubist that wearing it is part of the gig...I will wear a 'Tinkerbell' costume when he arrives so he doesn't think I have gone insane.  I can just IMAGINE what the Conductor would think, entering the pit, and seeing me in a 'Tinkerbell' costume, and a man in a Gorilla costume sitting holding a Tuba where there should be a string bass...I would just stand, and ask him..."AHHHHHHHHHHH.....AHHHHHHHHHHHHH...What was the assignment again?  I forgot."   ::)
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Re: An unusual Gig...*S*
« Reply #13 on: December 23, 2017, 07:50:36 AM »
JDL

I WANT PICS!!!!!  ;D

Offline Medi

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Re: An unusual Gig...*S*
« Reply #14 on: December 26, 2017, 02:07:58 PM »
...Once, in a pit orchestra in a Musical, we did play a trick on the Conductor.  We all wore 'sleeping attire'.  Some of the guys looked really bad...unshaven...hair all mussed...wearing pajama bottoms and a bathrobe.   :o  We women did different things...some had curlers in their hair...and fluffy bathrobes.  Some of us wore sexy sleepwear...of course we wore the robes that go with those...we didn't want to offend anyone who looked into the Pit.   8)  The Conductor just looked at us after he entered, and said..."OK, now remember that cut at measure 87 in the 8th piece."  I did hear him mutter, as he walked out of the pit at the end of the performance..."I wonder if Pizza Hut is hiring...I bet I could be a Manager..." ::)
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