So, I may have neglected my blog a bit. Sometimes you need a sabbatical. Well, I'm back! I decided to choose some of my favorite pics from each month's musical adventures to bring us to where we are now, smack at the end of August.
I missed out on last year's U.S. Army Band Tuba-Euphonium Workshop. I'd just given birth, and wasn't up to wandering around Ft. Myer with the low-brass horde. This January, I was happy to return and even brought Brendan and Bo along to catch a few performances. A particularly special moment was Dr. Bowman meeting Bo for the first time. Bo was extra squirmy that day. I don't get to see my teacher and mentor as much as I'd like these days. I'm sure it's fun for him to see his students all grown up with things like jobs and babies.
January also brought me to San Antonio with The U.S. Army Field Band Brass Quintet, where we worked with The U.S. Army All-American Marching Band. The day after we returned from Texas, I had the opportunity to appear on Fox and Friends to talk about an Army Field Band tweet that went viral. I was a talking head on Fox News! The idea still makes me laugh.
I went to the Fox News D.C. office with our Public Affairs expert who helped me prep for the interview. We hung out in a fancy green room where a makeup artist made me "camera ready." Grateful for that! When it was time for our spot, they took me to a tiny studio, gave me an earpiece, and said, "okay you'll be on in a few minutes." Then they left me alone in the room. It's very odd because you can't see anything; there's no monitor, just a black screen covering the camera lens. That's intentional, because when there's a monitor off to the side, you can't help but look at it, which means you are looking off-screen to viewers at home. Luckily I'd done similar interviews before with local news stations, so it didn't throw me off too much. It's pretty weird to sit in a room alone talking to yourself, pretending you can see the hosts and hoping your facial expressions look right.
I was a bit nervous, but I'd done lots of prepwork, which helped immensely. Preparation has a direct correlation with performance anxiety, in both music and public speaking! During my pre-interview, the producer kept trying to get me to say something negative and inflammatory about the situation. I had to stay positive and stick to our messaging. I was a little worried they would grill me on the show, but the hosts were very kind, and Elizabeth Hasselbeck even asked about Bo. A producer must have Googled me or something. It was a really fun experience, and my family got a huge kick out of seeing me on TV. You can watch the clip here.
The U.S. Army Field Band Brass Quintet traveled to Miami in February (which was awesome, sign me up for winter in Miami), for a weeklong chamber group tour. Breaking off with the quintet is always fun. Here we are performing for students at the University of Miami Frost School of Music.
I spent some of February and all of March on a 37-day tour of the upper Midwest. This was probably the coldest tour I've ever done. I can't say it was my favorite tour, but there were plenty of fun moments. The highlights were seeing Brendan's family in Minnesota (Brendan and Bo were there visiting as well), and a performance at Michigan State University, where I caught up with my college buddy Travis Scott, and paid my respects to Mr. Falcone, euphonium and MSU legend.
The best part about April? Coming home to my baby! I arrived to this awesome sign, a box of Godiva chocolates, and lots of snuggles.
I had the incredible honor of performing with the Monarch Brass Ensemble at the 2015 International Trumpet Guild Conference in Columbus, Ohio. This all-female brass ensemble includes musicians from major symphony orchestras, top university faculty, and my colleagues from D.C. military bands. Musicians from all over North America joined forces to put together an ambitious program in just a few rehearsals. The group was led by one of my favorite conductors, Dr. Mallory Thompson, Director of Bands at Northwestern University. I learned so much from her throughout the week, both playing under her baton and watching her run rehearsals. Performing alongside these incredible women was humbling and inspiring. The best part was sitting next to Gail Robertson, who I consider both a friend and mentor. Our paths have crossed many times, but it's a rare treat that we actually get to play together.
June held a 23-day summer tour, my 31st birthday, and an appearance at the International Euphonium-Tuba Festival in Atlanta. I was so busy, I didn't take many pictures, so here's a shot by Rob McIver of Chris and I wowing the crowds with Melody Shop.
The Field Band spent four days in Detroit with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra at The Henry Ford, including 4th of July. We had lots of social media activity surrounding that event, and my team worked hard to find new ways of sharing our story with the public. I've been learning Adobe Premiere and shooting short video footage on a Canon 7D. I can't say I entirely know what I'm doing yet, but I'm working on it.
We had the opportunity to shoot on the grounds of historic Greenfield Village. I had this idea to get some musicians popping up in random places throughout the village while playing patriotic music. The Henry Ford's Social Media Manager was beyond helpful, driving us around in a real Model A, helping us figure out how to make this crazy idea happen. Here's the finished product!
This picture is from an interview I did with Fox 45 Baltimore talking about the Army Field Band's Ft. Meade Summer Concert Series. This is another imaginary interviewer situation, and we are outside because the band building's fire alarm went off right before we were schedule to broadcast live. It's always exciting around here!
Well, here we are at the end of August. So you can see I've been busy, just not with blogging. I love this time of year, when the heat of summer doggedly lingers, but you can feel hints of fall on early morning walks. I'm looking ahead to a tuba quartet recording session, Fall Tour 2015, and the holiday season. I hope everyone else is having a great year too!