For the past several days I have been transferring old VHS tapes to DVD. All these VHS tapes are, of course, of my daughter at various ages.
Last night I was making a DVD of one of her All State Music Festival performances. Forgive me for bragging, but my daughter was in the Iowa High School All State Band for two years and the All State Orchestra one year. Her three years as an All Stater were, well, pretty special for me. That is an understatement.
As I watched her play the clarinet during her high school and college career, well, as my old band teacher would have said "the buttons popped off my shirt." She was accomplished in many things, but I was most pleased with her music accomplishments. Once upon a time years ago I played the trumpet. To see your own child have success in something that meant a lot to you at the same age is, well, really special.
Only a tiny percentage of all Iowa high school musicans get into the All State Festival. It is extremely competive. I remember sitting on a Saturday afternoon waiting for the results. Though I am not religious, I would even resort to saying a prayer or several!
Each time my daughter tried out, she got selected. Her picture now hangs on the wall at her high school - though I never did feel enough was done for her given the extent of her accomplishment. If she had been a three time state wrestling champion (Iowa is big in wrestling) or a track star, well ... But I am glad she was an All State musican. To me, that meant everything.
One of my favorite selections was when she was in the All State Band as a high school sophmore and the group played The Children's March. This upbeat piece was written by Percy Grainger in 1916. Though originally written for duo pianos, it has become most well known as a wind instrument piece -- and, of course, the clarinet is a wind instrument.
Here's The Children's March.