I said a number of times yesterday that the Shazz Festival Day is better than Christmas, and really, it is. Not every musician has the chance to see their favorite performer, in concert, attend a workshop with them and then meet them in person...and most absolutely don't get to do it three times in a row. Amazingly enough, I am one of those lucky people.
Two years ago I attended my second Shazz Festival, although technically it was the first year I stayed for the entire experience. As a senior, I had high hopes of getting into the All Star Group, and when I did, I was thrilled. However, that definitely wasn't the best part of the day. Oh no...the best part was getting to play with professional saxophonist Eric Marienthal, a musician that eventually become my inspiration in my major. Plus, that day was the day I cite as when I decided to be a music major, and gosh it was a great choice.
And then last year I went back, not as a student, but as a musician and alumni, having the chance to meet Eric in person again, as well as the spectacular Gordon Goodwin, who has come up with some seriously great music. After all, he is an award winning composer.
But this year...this year I got to continue the tradition by meeting Eric (again) and another professional musician, Andy Martin, the lead trombonist in basically everything, including Dancing with the Stars!
And to conclude my day of music, my family, plus a friend of Jonny and my friend Ashley, attended the United States Army Field Band Concert, which was a pretty spectacular experience as well. The group is impressive, as it should be, considering it's made up of some of our country's most dedicated musicians. For some, they may have enjoyed one of the choral pieces, or the opera, or something else, but for me? Star Wars. That's right. They played the original theme from Star Wars and it was just about the greatest thing ever. My parents actually attended the Star Wars in Concert tour several years ago, and I didn't go along, simply because I didn't yet appreciate Star Wars. I kind of regret that decision. Either way...Star Wars...which also happens to work perfectly for a little way Disney has once tied into my day.
Oh, and I know I mentioned this on the first blog post outlining my first trip to see Eric Marienthal, but Eric and Andy, as well as many of the other professional musicians I've met, actually worked at Disneyland and performed as part of the band back in the day. It certainly feels right to meet people so successful at what I work at everyday and to know that they too worked for Disney, the same place I hope to end up in my future.
Have a magical day!
(Note: This blog post was written on March 22).