Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Day 540: Backstage Music

My High School Band may have gotten accepted to march in the Magic Kingdom, but that doesn't mean that's all we went to Florida for. Nope! We were also accepted to do a workshop with Disney Performing Arts, and it was certainly a wild adventure.

For those of you that don't know, there's a Performing Arts center backstage in Epcot, right between Italy and the American Adventure. I'd actually seen it before, since I've been backstage in that area, but I completely forgot (or didn't realize) that the DPA Center was there. It's a neat looking little place, and the inside area is beautiful as well. When you do a workshop there, your band goes into one of the recording studios and sight reads through music, recording as you go until you record a song or two from a movie, which is then paired with the film footage for your own custom recording of the music from that movie. It's honestly a wonderful experience.

For our workshop, I actually ended up playing Clarinet. You're probably all like, "but Lizzie, you don't play clarinet?" and you're right! I don't! Or at least I'm not very good at it. About a month before the trip I was discussing with my band director what I might end up playing. The problem? Four oboe players were going on the trip, and the alto row is so full that one of them actually already had left to go help out in percussion. Which mean that there wasn't really room to fit me in.

So we stuck me in the clarinet row instead, and within a month I picked up the instrument enough that, surprisingly, I could play most of the music we read at the workshop. It probably wasn't quite as rewarding for me then if I had been playing my alto, or even my oboe, but the experience was still great, and I was super proud of the fact that I could handle playing a first clarinet part with Megan. Also, a special shout out to Ashley, who taught me how to play that darn thing.

Within the two hours we spent there, we played through some great music, including the theme from Beauty and the Beast and music from Aladdin, which was the film that they backed the music to. Aladdin is honestly my least favorite Disney movie, but it was still fun. However, by the far the BEST song we played had to be Trashin' The Camp from Tarzan. Our band director was enlisted to do animal noises on the recording and I don't think I've ever laughed so hard in my life.

Plus, we got to meet this wonderful cast member, Allen! (I hope I spelled that right. I'm not exactly sure). He was great! Hilarious, and most certainly a spectacular trumpet player (among other instruments). Plus we got these special pins for the workshop and it just makes me super happy. Actually, I should figure out where I put mine. I think I remember where it is...unless I already put it in my pin case. Gosh I need to sort out where I put all my Disney stuff from this trip.

But for sure, the workshop was GREAT! And we got to go into backstage Epcot, and there's nothing I enjoy more than going backstage past Test Track and the little Spaceship Earth thing. It probably has a name, and I should probably learn what it is...but I think I'll have to save that one for when I finally work there some day.

Have a magical day!

(Note: This blog post was written on August 1).