Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Jazz Band Audition

We pulled into our neighborhood after our 15 minute drive home, and Jackson said, "I left my cell phone at the school!"  I grumbled greatly as I turned the van around to drive ALL the way back to the school.

This week my children started their third week of school.  My two oldest boys attend the middle school for musical theater, band, and choir.  I homeschool them in their core classes.  Because I homeschool my children, I have a right to proclaim their grade level.  At age 11, Jackson is taking courses with mostly 8th graders.  Tyson, age 9, would be in 4th grade, but I proclaimed him as a 6th grader.  However, most of his classes are with 7th graders.

The boys auditioned for band- Jackson as a percussionist and Tyson as a trumpet player.  They were both placed in the highest level band possible.  Jackson also qualified for the jazz band.  I asked the band director if Tyson could play his trumpet in the jazz band too.  The band director very firmly said he NEVER allows 6th graders to take jazz band, so Tyson wouldn't even have the opportunity to audition for the jazz band.  I felt sad, but this director had built up a huge school of the arts elsewhere and was in the process of creating a school of the arts within their school as well.  I was in no position to push the issue.

In the jazz band, Jackson was asked to play the drum set.  The band director stated that he was looking for another piano player.  Jackson plays the piano, but he was needed more as the drum set soloist.

When we returned for Jackson's cell phone, I suggested to Tyson that he should inform the band director that he played the piano... maybe now he could be in the jazz band??  I encouraged him to go back into the school and ask the director if he could audition as a pianist.

Tyson said, "I don't think I should.  He's talking to somebody, and he might yell at me."  Knowing he gets upset with the kids (and adults) often, I agreed with Tyson.  I started to drive away from the school.  Right at that moment, a very strong feeling came over me that I needed to turn around right then and send Tyson back into the school.

I did it!  I turned around and sent Tyson back to the band room to talk to his director.

Tyson went back with excitement, and I prayed with all my heart for him to have a good experience.  I felt God reassuring my heart more and more as I prayed that all would be alright.  I could feel that I was praying for something which was in accordance with God's desires.

After several, long minutes, Tyson returned... I eyed his facial expressions closely as he approached the car... he was smiling!!

Tyson said his director asked him if he knew how to play any songs from memory.  Because of the craziness of the move, Tyson hadn't practiced the piano since living here in Florida neither for the couple of weeks before we left Michigan... until today!!!  He had just spent 45 minutes during his lunch break practicing some songs he had previously learned.

Grateful he had practiced, Tyson answered his band director, "Yes, I know a couple church songs!"

With all the confidence in the world, Tyson played the children's primary songs:  Follow the Prophet, and Book of Mormon Stories.

The director loved the songs and asked Tyson what grade he was in.  Tyson told him he was only in 6th grade.  The director said, "That could be a problem; but if you can play THOSE songs, I have no problem with it."

I am so grateful that this band director made an exception to his rule against 6th graders.  (Thank goodness he didn't know that Tyson was only 9 years old!!)  I'm grateful that the Spirit prompted me to send Tyson at that exact time to request a second time for the opportunity to audition.  I'm grateful I listened!

A couple of days ago, I wrote about the confidence that we all gained from a father's blessing.  I think it's amazing and quite miraculous that this was his first day back to school since he had received so much confidence from his fathers' blessing.   Tyson could have re-entered that band room with fear of failure, or fear of anger from his teacher.  He did not.  He walked with confidence.  That confidence was crucial for him as he re-entered those doors to ask for a long-shot.

Isn't it also amazing that Tyson had JUST practiced those songs during his lunch break, so that he would be ready for his impromptu audition?  Wow!  Jackson also thought he must have been inspired to leave his cell phone at the school, so Tyson could return for the audition... maybe so. :-)

Each moment of our days really are being guided to prepare us for the next beautiful moment.

Congratulations my little Tyson!!