April 14

Symphony Hall, Boston

Remember my weekend filled with music and MICCA on March 30 and 31? The gold-medal winning bands could enter a lottery to have the chance to perform at Symphony Hall in Boston. The Wind Ensemble and the 5th Grade Concert Band from our high school were awarded slots to perform there today, along with dozens of other bands and orchestras.

I drove into Boston, thinking I had left plenty of time to get there, park, and walk to Symphony Hall. Halfway there, the traffic started getting thick and there was a lot of stop-and-go all the way in to town. When I got off the highway at Massachusetts Avenue (or Mass Ave, as we say here), the cars were at a stand still. I crept along for far too many minutes, watching the clock tick closer and closer to the performance time. I was surprised at all this traffic just for middle and high school performances, but maybe they all love music like I do! Turns out there was Boston Bruins and a Boston Red Sox game going on that afternoon in the city. Oh well.

Finally, when I was within 4 blocks, I saw a sign for parking (only $12! Red Sox parking is usually $40 or more), shot down the side street, found the lot, paid the man, and ran to Symphony Hall, arriving just at the appointed hour. I burst in the door and ran upstairs. The attendant told me our school was on stage. She must have seen the look of panic on my face because she let me slip in (absolutely positively never done when the Boston Symphony Orchestra is playing). The performances were running ahead of schedule and our band was halfway done with their program. I wanted to cry. But I’m grateful I heard them play in one of the most acoustically perfect performance spaces in the world. And I sat there like a proud mama, beaming as I watched my son sit on that stage and play, because, really, that’s the best part.

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