Friday, December 21, 2018

Sing Around the Tree

On Monday morning the little ones and I went to the elementary school for "Sing Around the Tree." Each grade files into the auditorium to sing their parents one song before filing back out again, so some parents (like me) needed to be there from start to finish. Others only needed to be there for a couple of songs at the beginning or a couple of songs at the end. And the gym is somehow always packed.

Last year we were running late and were lucky to get a seat at the very back of the auditorium (after a few families had left). We were still standing in the hallway when Benjamin's class finished singing! And—boy!—was I ever grateful for that chair by the time I snagged one (I had a new baby and a toddler with me; and the chair I found just happened to be beside my friend Necia, who pulled Zoë onto her lap for a snuggle).

I just skimmed through a diatribe of a blog post a friend shared about how rude it is of parents to leave a concert after their child has finished performing, and I suppose it technically isn't good concert etiquette, but I'm totally cool it when it comes to an elementary showcase.

Parents whose children are in the older grades know to show up a little late if they can't commit to a whole hour of singing time and parents whose children are in the younger grades know to be there early if they want a good seat. Allowing the audience to ebb and flow like this means that even if you were at the very back of the gym (or the hallway) for your first child's song, you might have a decent seat by your oldest child's song.

I see no need to shame parents for leaving early (or arriving late, as the author of the blog admits to having done in the first place (which is equally rude)), but you're also free to stay for the whole concert if you want to. I'm cool with that, too. I love Christmas music! And this particular concert is a pretty relaxed atmosphere.

Benjamin's in grade one this year so his class was very near the beginning. I could see him staring out into the sea of faces, trying to find mine. "I can't see my mom!" he mouthed to his friend Holly (aptly named for this occasion). I stood up and waved to him and his face lit up (sometimes being a mom is glamorous).

He's in a white shirt on the second row from the back

His class sang Pinecones and Holly Berries, which inexplicably made me tear up. We were sitting on the second row and you can barely make him out between the two heads in the frame. The school really needs to consider using the stage because when you're in the back you can't see anything at all...

Here's Miriam's grade singing about Santa getting stuck in the chimney (but only a small snippet of it because of fussy babies). She is in the very back row (with the big red scarf):

Rachel's grade sang I Want a Hot Cup of Cocoa, which was charmingly accompanied by dancing marshmallows (including Rachel's friend Kenzie). If we had to stay in limbo for another year it was worth it to watch Rachel perform this song (we got to hear it last year, too, because apparently the sixth grade class always sings it). Rachel's teacher played the piano for them and she was amazing (she had been a piano major before she "got bored" and switched to teaching, I guess):

It was a lovely mid-day break for the little kids and I; we loved watching the kids perform and enjoyed singing along (quietly) with the songs that we recognized.

1 comment:

  1. My association with Pine Cones and Holly Berries is my old Bing Crosby Christmas album. I think the tune is a bit on the melancholy/happy side, like some LeRoy Anderson tunes. It was written by Meredith Willson (Music Man) and used in his Broadway musical "Here's Love" which was based on the film "Miracle on 34th Street" which is kind of a sad/happy story. That aside, the children all sound great!