It was a busy weekend, but all the concerts were fun! Caltech’s two jazz bands performed at the Bandorama concerts, and featured a different vocalist each night. Kjerstin Williams’s performance singing a mashup of Round Midnight and My Favorite Things was particularly good. The juggler and theremin player were great crowd pleasers in the concert band performances. I got to watch the juggler’s routine, which involved juggling five balls at once, and juggling three balls while playing his trombone before catching one of the balls in the bell. When the theremin player demonstrated his instrument, he did an uncannily accurate imitation of a motorcycle. The hall was pretty full both nights, despite the parties and other activities going on this weekend.
My favorite piece of music was one of our concert band selections, Waltz 2 by Dmitri Shostakovich. The piece is much heavier than a typical waltz, with booming downbeats and a beautiful melody. Bill seemed to have a good time conducting the downbeats with huge waves of his arms.
At the concert, the band program said goodbye to its graduating members with plaques commemorating their years in band. Each leaving member wrote a paragraph about what band meant to them that was featured in the program. Having a diversion from academics and a creative manner of expression was a common thread in these summaries, as well as being able to work with our director and the other members of the band program. One student even mentioned that music enhanced his mathematical skills with its logical structure. It was nice to see the students’ perspective on the contribution of music to their lives at Caltech.
If you want to see the show for yourself, apparently the Bandorama performance will be on YouTube in a few days, so look it up and check it out. I’ll write about the chamber music concert next time, but for now I need sleep. See you next time!