Friday, January 28, 2011

The show must go on

My daughter was disappointed this morning when it was announced schools would be closed, because she has been rehearsing for months, and very intensively this week, for her school's Dance Concert, which opens tonight. She is in two of the dances, all of which have been created by student choreographers. This is her second year performing (she is on the right in the still from last year's concert, above). She exhaled when it was decided at noon that even though school was not in session today, Dance Concert would go on as planned, since the venue was sold out and the dancers were itching to dance!

My daughters five best friends who have been with her since kindergarten, all attended tonight and the six girls went out for dinner afterward. I love the way these girls support one another's pursuits, even though they are all at different high schools now. My husband and I will attend tomorrow night's performance, and Saturday night's too, and in the middle of it all, on Saturday during the day, we will also attend junior college day, the kickoff of the whole college application process for eleventh graders. My girl was tapped by her teachers to lead one of the college day workshops so she is having a very busy time. And of course, there is always schoolwork. I've literally been holding my breath all week on her behalf!

Observing my tamped down anxiety, my husband looked over his professorial reading glasses and said, "I think you need to see someone and take something."

I opted for pop culture escapism. While I waited for my girl to come home, I watched the American Idol auditions. I didn't think I would watch this season, but out of curiosity I tuned in last week and who knew that I would fall in love with new judge Steven Tyler of Aerosmith? Aging rock and roller, khol-rimmed eyes and a Puckish sense of fun, no meanness in him that I can see, irreverent and foul mouthed and challenged in the area of impulse control, a recovered addict with the classic rocker's to hell and back trajectory, and now the rocker has the balls to say yes to being a judge on bubble-gum pop American Idol—and my God, he's adorable! Somewhat unhinged and this is me take it or leave it and if you take it, we'll have a blast and if you don't, well, I plan to have a blast anyway.

The other new judge, singer Jennifer Lopez appeals to me, too. Overall it's a kinder, gentler judging panel, way more playful, and way more in touch with what it takes for those kids to stand up there and lay themselves bare. This new panel respects the voices, the musicality, the performances. They are not about humiliating the contestants, and for me that is a relief. Steven Tyler said he wants to find the next Janis Joplin, and he's clearly attracted to the voices that have tears and pain and broken chords in them, those are the ones who move him. He's currently writing his autobiography, Does the Noise in My Head Bother You? No, not at all. I can't really hear it over my own noise, so we're good.


  1. Quick note for the night. Steven Tyler IS a very nice, very kind-hearted person. We ran into him in an airport in Boston about four years ago and when my husband(who has never met a stranger) called out to him, he turned around on the escalator and began a long conversation with us. AT the end, I asked him if the girls could be in a photo with him and he ditched his "people", took off his cowboy hat, and put his arms around my girls. He even made me take more than one picture to be sure that we got a good one. He was so friendly and so personable. I will have to put a copy of the picture on my blog soon, now that everyone recognizes who he is.

    I have other things to say to you, but they will have to wait until tomorrow as my eyes are very weary:() Sleep well, my dear friend.

    Love and hugs,

  2. I felt exactly the same way about Steven Tyler and Jennifer Lopez, Angella! I like watching American Idol, but had stopped watching the auditions because the judges always seemed so mean. I'm falling in love with Steven Tyler, just a teensy bit :)

  3. have a great's probably not good luck to say 'break a leg' to dancers - looking forward to the review and maybe a few snaps!

  4. That's so exciting about your daughter's show.

    and I just love that we both have a daughter in Gr. 11. Mine is home from work and getting ready to go to a party though... I remember parties,
    and so of course have mixed feelings. ;) She is wise and careful and more concerned about her future than I was at that age , so really...

    I don't watch the show, but have heard similar sentiment.

  5. You get a big thumb's up from me on the American Idol thing and yes, especially Stephen Tyler and by god, Jennifer Lopez is a beautiful woman. So sue us- we are having a good time watching the auditions.
    Now- as to what your husband said- maybe. Think about it. For me there was no question. I HAD to get on "something." Had to.
    And if I believed in god, I would say that it is not part of god's plan for us to suffer every moment of our days.
    Love you, darling.

  6. Debra W, I would love to see that picture!

    ellen, who knew he was such a sweetheart!

    mouse, enjoy the photos! a great show t'was.

    deb, as the fellow mother of an 11th grader, i so know where you are! sometimes I feel that these teenage years are one long stretch of me holding my breath and praying hard, which shouldn't really go hand in hand, since the latter should preclude the former. we do our best. and we have good girls!

    Ms. Moon, I agree about Jennifer Lopez. As for the other, I'm going to email you.