Over the past month I have been blessed to attend several free performances. The first one was in the newly restored Mormon Tabernacle and who do you think performed? None other than the Mormon Tabernacle Choir! This was a Thank You performance to all those who worked on the restoration project and their families. My dad's cousin is a builder for the Church and was able to get 100 tickets and invited my parents, my sister Amy, and me to go along. (poor Sam, he works evenings and hasn't been able to attend any of these performances) I don't think I even need to tell you how wonderful it was. The Choir performed their tour line-up which consisted of a few patriotic, spiritual, show tunes songs. It was beautiful and moving. Even though I only live about 3 miles from the Tabernacle, I rarely have taken the opportunity to see the Choir perform live. It is an amazing experience, one that I plan to repeat again and again.
The second event was of a slightly less caliber but equally exciting. A friend of mine in my ward decided to have a backyard play so for 3 mornings last week invited any kids interested over to her house to rehearse a play and then on Friday evening, they performed the play for the parents. "The Half-Pint Cowboy" made it's backyard debut and all the kids had fun dressing up as cowboys or Indians. A few times I was distracted by the noise coming from off-stage...my children wrestling with each other over a chair...sheesh. But it was cute.
Right after this play, I hurried downtown to Abravanel Hall where The Sterling Singers were performing. My mom has been a member of this choir for about 10 months and it is a volunteer choir formed for the purpose of a love for singing and spiritual upliftment. The choir was commissioned by composer, Crawford Gates, to perform many of his compositions for a group of professional choir people (sorry, I can't remember the name of the convention). On Friday night, they gave a performance for all the family members and anyone else who wanted to attend. Crawford Gates has composed over 800 pieces of music in his lifetime, including the well-loved LDS hymn, Our Savior's Love. And the scores for the Hill Cumorah Pageant. It was really an amazing show. I'm so proud of my mom for her dedication to learning this difficult music and pursuing one of her passions...music.
Last night was perhaps my favorite show. The Utah Symphony was performing at the West Valley Multi-Cultural Center in the amphitheatre. My parents, Amy and my boys and I all loaded up and went. It was so much fun. Most of the selections were patriotic, including Souza marches and Yankee Doodle Fantasie. They also did an Armed Forces Salute where they played all the songs of the Armed Forces and had those that served in the particular branch, stand to be honored. For some reason, my dad had a lapse in memory and stood during the Air Force Song, totally dissing the 22 years he served in the Navy!!! He was really embarrassed when he realized his mistake and would NOT stand during Anchors Aweigh. We all got a good laugh at his expense. Our favorite of the night, however, was a selection from Star Wars. Oh, the look on Curtis' face when Darth Vader's theme started! He was grinning from ear to ear. It was such a fun evening and the atmosphere was so great, the orchestra backdropped by the Wasatch Mountains. I love that I have the opportunity to expose my kids to this music and help them acquire a love for it. Nana has already promised that next time they come over, she will get out her violin and let them play it. They are so excited!