props to goodchewdrin for inspiring me to write about music
e of a concluded my high school career or my music career in cdnis in general.. i guess it’s time for some nostalgic reminiscing. i still remember very clearly the day i chose my instrument. because i told niermier that i could read the bass clef, i was given the choice of trombone and euphonium. since my cousin nicole played the trombone, i decided to be a rebel and chose the euphonium. (fyi, my cousin now plays the euphonium.) i regretted the second day and went to him in tears asking for a switch because the instrument was so heavy. he told me to try for one month. if i didn’t like it, i could change then.
i think the instrument+case is about 20+ pounds. u can’t imagine how horrible it was to sludge down the stairs while everybody was running down with their flutes, clarinets, trumpets.
niermier let me join the pops band where we played songs like seasame street and eye of the tiger. back then, byron and lloyd were still there. I remember looking at them in total admiration how they were able to play those high notes. although i was a bit bitter, i grudgingly stuck with the euphonium because of the challenge it now presented me with.
in grade 8, came dacho. the most memorable thing of that whole year was playing the d-major scale for a test. i practiced really hard, even went in for extra lunch practices to ace that one scale test. i screwed it up and ended up crying in front of jason lau and mr dacho. he gave me lots of encouragement and i think it was because of that support and reassurance that i chose music as my high school art, started taking euphonium lessons and never looked back.
i guess i should mention my teacher scott. early years of my lessons have faded me but i remember he being quite stern with me, especially the preparation for my graded practical exams. i would play the same phrase 10 times just because i messed it up once. grade 4, grade 6, grade 8. preparation for grade 8 exam was actually pretty tough. i couldn’t play the whole song properly from beginning to end until one week before the exam. haha. he literally came every day. i have him to thank for for his support. i don’t think he would not have done it for other students but he really did come almost everyday during the summer.
i think that helped develop our bond and made me grow to like the instrument even more.
so now i’m here, part of symphonic winds and stage band. i’ve also picked up the tuba, still remembering very freshly the solo in band i played after the third month of learning the tuba: santa claus is coming to town. i’ve also picked up the trombone, playing along side merak on his journey to get rhythm.
after six years of learning the instrument, i finally played my solo in public. i guess that for me was more of an ending than the band. yes, my band career has been quite fulfilling but i’ve always yearned that individual recognition for my skill on the euphonium. i’m glad i took on that challenge when i was first presented with it six years ago.
i would like to add this as a sidenote, as to what i’ve realized from writing about all of this – nothing comes without hardwork. for those who’ve fluked their way through life so far, my advice would be heads up, good luck. i’ve come this far achieving most things in my life through sacrifice and effort. achieving all this on the euphonium required many many hours of work that is not seen. all of this does make a difference. often that difference seems small when you compare to your friends because you’re usually on the same strata. but if you look the bigger picture, you see how much more you’ve had over others. i say that with a tinge of the tone of a supremacist and an elitist but i think i’ve earned it (sounds familiar?). for those who are chugging along and have greater and bigger dreams than me, good luck. you will get there