I have new inspiration and a new focus for the next period of my life, and it all started with an accordian. Wanting to add music to our Italian class, Albe and I decided to sit in on some classes that one of the mothers was doing in the Spanish classes. Now, I’ve known Sara for a while, and always thought she was great, but when she walked into our class for the first time, armed with what little Italian she was able to learn in a week, and proceeded to teach Italian songs to our enraptured kids, she jumped from mortal status to demigoddess. It was amazing. Before I knew it, 30 minutes had passed and we were cleaning up and moving on to the Spanish kinder classes.
Now, I can play a Bach fugue (or I could, and will again, to be more specific) but while I’m a proficient classical pianist, I am also very limited in my abilities. I am tethered to a gigantic, stationary instrument and reliant on sheet music. I do have a roll-up piano, but as it is physically flat, it isn’t fulfilling to play, and still isn’t the same thing as a truly portable instrument. But there was Sara, playing her accordian, accompanied by Albe on the box drum. There was Sara, teaching the kids to hit sticks, and then Albe tapping out rhythms with his claves for them to mimic. There was Sara, playing her ukulele while the kids jammed percussively along and Albe played the conga. She probably can’t play a Bach fugue, but she is much more of a musician than I.
When it was over, and Boy Blue and I had helped Albe get all his gear back to the car (and oh! how good it felt to be lugging percussion gear around after all these years!) I looked at him and said, “why not?” And it was decided. We won’t be ready next week, but we can certainly get started in the fall, bringing music time to our little Italianos.
This summer I’m going to purchase and learn to play an ukulele. I owe it to myself to broaden my horizons. I owe it to the children to broaden theirs as well.