I have no idea why watching my children sing made me cry. They aren’t bad singers, in fact, quite the opposite. They had their first choir concert yesterday and while I fully admit that I am completely biased I am here to tell you that it was awesome.
I give huge props to the woman who made forty 2nd through 6th graders sound like a legitimate childrens choir. I suppose that age range is what would make them a childrens choir, but they sounded good. I’ve been singing in choirs for over 20 years now (damn, when did I get so old?) and I know a good choir from a bad one. These kids did a fantastic job.
Okay, I’m done bragging for now. Besides, nobody wants to hear me talk about how great my offspring are, but you will probably be impressed to know that this all happened during a Washington Capitals playoff game. If you know me at all, you know that I take my sports teams very seriously. You also know that playoff games are about my favorite thing in the world – right after fantasy football drafts.
Yes, I know I have issues.
I have missed my own performances for sporting events but even game six of the Caps/Bruins series could not tear me away from my kids’ first concert.
So I am sitting there, in a pew, and weeping for reasons I cannot explain. I don’t feel sad at all. Can something make you cry just by being too cute? Are these pride induced tears? Is the guy behind me cutting an onion? I am just sitting there pretending that I haven’t finally snapped when my dad elbows me and points at my mom. “Can you believe she’s crying?” he whispers. I mime laughter and act like I have something in my eye and only my mom is crazy.
I must not be very convincing because my husband is a few people down laughing at me. I know he is. He is giving me that same look he gives me at the end of movies when he is looking over to see if I am crying.
I don’t know why he even bothers looking. I am always crying. All of those commercials where athletes are thanking their mothers make me cry. I always cry during that episode of “The West Wing” when Mrs. Landingham dies. Sometimes even dog food commercials make me cry, but the only time I have only been moved to tears during a choir concert once before and that was because we were doing a 9/11 tribute for the 10th anniversary of that tragic day and a little girl sang “ashes to ashes, dust to dust” and I lost my shit.
Oh wait! That isn’t true. I cried twice because when I was singing “The Messiah” with the Florida Philharmonic back when I was 23 I was the only one who hadn’t sung “The Hallelujah Chorus” one million times and so I was basically sight reading during the performance. When I glanced up at the conductor the entire audience was standing up and I was so overcome that I could barely breathe.
I didn’t know that audiences traditionally stand during Handel’s “Hallelujah Chorus” because choral legend (shut up, there is too choral legend) says that when King George II first heard the piece he was so moved by this particular chorus that he stood up. When the king stands, everybody stands and now everyone stand out of tradition.
Also “The Messiah” is a super long piece and if you do all of the movements with the repeats and at a reasonable pace by the time you get to Hallelujah you are three hours into the thing and you probably need to stretch.
Nobody really knows if the King George II thing is true, but that is neither here nor there because the fact is the audience at the Gusman Center for the Performing Arts knew to stand and I wasn’t expecting it and it blew me away.
I think I cried a little bit.
I know I will never forget it.
Maybe I will never forget the concert yesterday. I know I was bursting with pride. Maybe that is why I was crying. Maybe it was the extraordinary cuteness. Maybe it was because I was missing the game. Maybe it was because I was hoping so hard that they loved it as much as I do and I am so thrilled that they have this opportunity to work with such amazing musicians at such a young age. I don’t know why I was crying. I really don’t know why my mom was crying but I know that it was totally worth missing a hockey game to be there.
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