After arriving in Boston we had our first experience with “The T”, Boston’s subway system. It really wasn’t that bad! We hopped the silver line from the airport to downtown Boston, and then rode the red line towards our hotel. Well, I say “our hotel”, but I was only going to stay in it for the first night and spend the rest of my nights in a dorm at MIT. The red line didn’t actually connect to the hotel, so we had to cab it the rest of the way. We dumped all of our stuff in the hotel room and hussled out because I had an appointment to meet. I had e-mailed the director of the MIT Wind Ensemble a week or so before and asked if I could sit in on a rehearsal and he said that I could, so we had about 40 minutes to walk to campus from the hotel. As we were walking there we caught our first glimpse of Simmons hall (the dorm I want to stay in), which was very exciting because I’d only ever seen pictures of it before. I was walking, so it’s a little blurry.
We made it to Kresge Auditorium right at 7:30 pm, which is when the rehearsal started. We walked in quietly and sat near the back of the auditorium, but then the director noticed us.
“Is that Michael?” he yelled back.
I stood up “Yes”
“Do you want to sit on stage? Do you have your clarinet?”
“Uh, not with me.”
“Oh I misunderstood what you meant by ‘sitting in’ then. I’m sorry.”
“No, that’s ok, my fault, I’ll just sit back here and listen.”
“Ok, well, I brought some CD’s for you, here they are” he set them on the stage.
I wandered up and grabbed the CD’s, one from their Jazz Ensemble and one from their Wind Ensemble. I then just sat and listened to their rehearsal. Here’s a video of them playing:
As you can hear, they play some abstract stuff, nothing I’m used to. They commission songs from up-and-coming composers, meaning they don’t play standards. All of their songs are really dissonant and non-chordal, with very little sense of time. As the rehearsal went on I became less and less enthusiastic about joining them next year, mainly because what I was hearing wasn’t as musical or melodical as I like. Also, after chatting with some members of the band I realized that there was no chair order and that frequently people would be taken out of some songs and featured in others, meaning there was no gaurantee that I’d even get to play all the songs. After the rehearsal I went up and chatted with the director, shook his hand, thanked him for letting me listen, and then left.
Looks like no MIT Wind Ensemble for me.
My mom and I hopped a cab and drove back to the motel. I stashed all the energy drinks I brought in the little fridge. I was mentally and physically prepared to get absolutely no sleep that weekend!
Oh, and the hotel room had a cool lamp.
Then it was off to bed, the last night of sleep I’d get for quite some time. . .
GAH! Cell Phone! It was 11:30, and I wandered groggily over to my phone. It was my host at MIT calling to confirm that I’d meet him tomorrow. I “Uh-huh”d and “yep”d a lot and then hung up, finally able to go to bed.