The Recital

The other day The Sting was on the classics movie channel. Gad, I haven't seen that film in a long time.

A long time indeed.

But not so long ago that I could ever forget Robert Redford's sexy smile and Paul Newman's amazing blue eyes..... mmmmm.

*Ahem *

Erm, sorry. Where was I? Oh yeah, watching The Sting.

It brought back another memory of the 70's.... not one I am overly proud of though.

You see my early teen years were spent in various drawing, sculpting and painting classes. Oh how I loved those. I never wanted to leave.

Then there were the piano lessons. I enjoyed them, but I wasn't a natural, so I had to work hard to learn and pounded those ivories for a few years. Then one day it happened. I was signed up to compete in

A Recital.

Yes, this uber non-competitive girl was headed full speed into an Accck! competition. And the piece I would play was Scott Joplin's The Entertainer, featured in the movie The Sting.

I practiced.

And practiced.

And practiced some more.

I practiced until I was thoroughly repulsed by that damn tune.

Then as the time drew near, I my panic proportionally grew. Doubt crept in and overtook me.

How the heck could I play this in front of an audience???

I couldn't.

I chickened out. Days before the recital, I withdrew my entry.

And it's only taken me about 35 years to listen to that song again without cringing in shame.


17 People would rather be commenting:

Jeff said...

Why oh why must piano students subject themselves to the evils of The Entertainer? I had to play that song many many times over the course of my childhood musical lifespan with some of them ending in a ragtime train wreck.

I wish I had thought of withdrawing my entries!

Heather said...

I'm not a competer either. I don't blame you for withdrawing! LOL

Jill/Twipply Skwood said...

:-( Sorry about the rotten memory. But I'm sure withdrawing took it's own kind of courage.

ReformingGeek said...

It's too bad that we get those triggers and the regret starts. Sigh.

I loved to play ragtime on the piano. I was OK at it but those pieces were never what we had to play at recital. Our recitals weren't competitions, though, so it wasn't near as bad.

Sculpting? I'm impressed! My creations would have probably looked like distorted zombies.

jay said...

Oh, dear, what an ordeal you put yourself through! You should have just gone for it! I bet you wouldn't have suffered anywhere near so much, even if you'd messed it up!

Vegas Princess said...

I say brush off that sheet music and do an impromptu recitial for friends and family. Then you can all celebrate by watching Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (That's my favorite Redford/Newman movie)

MikeWJ at Too Many Mornings said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MikeWJ at Too Many Mornings said...

For me, it was the guitar and the song Maleguena. I had it down pat, but I got nervous, didn't do as well as I should have, and was beaten by some dude playing My Lady of Spain on the accordian. And here's the strange thing: There were not one, not two, not three, but four accordian players in the competition, all them playing My Lady of Spain. To this day, I hate that song, and I believe Maleguena is a superior song.

JoJo said...

I had to take organ lessons for a year in 2nd grade when my dad bought one. He was a natural musician. I was told I couldn't touch it unless I took lessons w/ him. Oh how I dreaded them. I would hide, drag my feet, complain....then get there and suck. I hated to practice. My teacher told my parents I was hopeless. I was supposed to do the recital, but I finally convinced my parents to let me quit lessons a few weeks b/f the recital. But I was dragged to the recital anyway, to watch Mrs. Weaver's other students proudly play their pieces on organ and piano. Ugh. I wanted to play the drums. My smother told me "it isn't lady-like". Oh yes. Because I've always been oh-so-feminine......lol

Debbie said...

Piano recitals, that brings back memories of terrifying stage fright! I was like you, not a natural and my recital piece "Fur Elise". I actually performed, but not well.
The Sting, now that brings back good memories. My first PN and RR movies was Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. They were so handsome.
(BTW, I found your blog through "of cats and cardstock". love the Kiss our furry butts photos!)

Babs-beetle said...

Some of us are competitors and some are just not. I am a 'Just not' and probably would have backed out too.

I never played an instrument as a child but then the 60's, Bob Dylan and Joan Baez happened. The rest is history, as they say.

Maureen said...

I don't know Jeff... it was a popluar tune back then, being an Academy Award winner and all. A Ragtime Train Wreck... Ha! Oh, and I LOVE it that my professional keyboard friend was the first to comment!!! Your talent and courage amaze me.

Heather: Thanks. Yeah, I am a non-competitive person for sure, which is why I hated sports in school... well, that and I was a klutz...

Jill: Well, that's one way to look at it I guess!

Reforming Geek: Oh yeah, I love to sculpt and paint and draw; much more than music. If you want to see my sculpting, check out my other blog, Creative Chaos (link on the sidebar).

Jay: Gone for it? Gone for it? I probably would have fainted. Or thrown up. Which would have scarred me MUCH more.

Vegas Princess: Ha! I had a mention of BCATSK in the post until I trimmed it down. They just played that one on TV too. Amazing and sad those were the only two Redford / Newman movies made.

Mike: I have to agree: I hate My Lady of Spain too... and I know I have seen SOMEONE playing on TV on accordian too! My brother took guitar. I could never get the hang of it either.

Oh Jo-Jo: Drums! Now THAT is what I wanted to play too! To heck with "ladylike"; too bad back then there were stupid stereotypes. That sucks that they dragged you to the recital anyway. Cruel.

Hi Debbie *waves* ! Welcome! Thanks for the comment on the "Butt photo" Ha! Yes, recitals were torture, weren't they? My daughter should thank the Gods I never put her through all that. You did Beethoven? Holy crap, bravo!

Babs: You are so right. My older sister never had music lessons; but as soon as the 70's hit, I think it became all the rage again. Lucky for me. Not.

JC said...

Admit it....you're dying to play it for a crowd now aren't you??

Maureen said...

Oh JC... "dying" is probably the perfect term to use if I ever even attempted to play in front of anyone... especially after all these years! (er, for the audience AND me, that is)

Tony Single said...

Perhaps you should've taken up the kazoo instead? I've heard that it takes only a million years of training to master, as opposed to the piano's gajillion million... :P

Ashley said...

Oh I hate recitals! You did the right thing.
I've been without computer for the last week- it's been fun to catch up on your blog! Now to go cast my vote on the last post :o)

Maureen said...

Ha! Tony! I fear I would suck just as much on a kazoo...

Oh too bad about the computer Ashley! Nice to hear from you again!

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