I got some emails from you with some questions, so I’m going to try to give you some answers.
Q: What determines what section you get placed in?
A: They talk to you and see what your interested in and then they do an assessment and try you out on several different pans to see how you do. Also they take into consideration the balance of the orchestra, i.e. what section we need more of. So if your lucky you may be placed on what you want if not you will end up loving what you get, trust me.
Q: How do you get to be part of the Engine Room?
A: Well to tell you the truth I’m not sure…the engine room is slightly different as far as becoming a part of the orchestra. Usually the director selects people for that job.
Q: Are the pans really made from oil drums?
A: Yes and no. Now a days they make drums specifically for making instruments. They even make sure that it has the right mix of metal for premium sound. So although it is an oil drum it has never been used as one, at least not in the case of our instruments.
OK, so like I said in the last post we played at the Sprucedale Winter Carnival the same night as the Olympic Opening Ceremonies, and yes I have absolutely no justification for why I haven’t written about it sooner, except for maybe the fact that I have spent most of my time watching the Vancouver 2010 Olympics! GO FOR GOLD!
Maybe one of the best things about performing in Sprucedale is the travel time, 5 MINUTES MAX!!!! Actually it was nothing like I expected. I am not sure what I expected Sprucedale isn’t very big so I sure didn’t plan on a packed house. We performed at the old community centre, which isn’t that big. So the group was one of the smallest groups we do, 15 people and that’s including the 4 in the engine room. We were the opening act and we played for about 30 minutes to a standing room only crowd. We started with O Canada! Which over the last few days we have heard quite a bit of. I have to say I really like our version of it. I still think it sounds the best when we play it except for maybe when Team Canada won Gold.
It seems like every audience has the same mix of people. What I mean is you have the people who are really excited from the get go and are enthusiastic right away. Then you have the people who are the exact opposite. They have a questioning look on there face, a slight frown of perplexion (not sure if that’s a word, but I’m using it) and you can almost hear them thinking “What the heck is this going to be like?”. Those are the most fun to watch because it doesn’t take long, half way through the 2nd song you see a subtle shift in their faces. They seem to say “hmm, this sounds alright.” Then next thing you know they start to smile, just slightly and their feet move ever so slightly. They may be the shy person who doesn’t dance, they may not even realize they are doing it. By the time the basses start to play Yellow Bird they are clapping and full out enjoying themselves. And that is what happened at Sprucedale. We finished the last song to thunderous applause, nope I’m not kidding THUNDEROUS applause which of course meant that we where more than happy to play an encore for them. Over all I think it went really well, the audience seemed to enjoy themselves and we enjoyed ourselves. So I guess all I have to say is, Thank You Sprucedale.