When I was in middle school I performed in Stars of Tomorrow, which is a production put on by the Kiwanis club in Powell thats been going on for years now. My friend Austin Lee was doing a fute solo I think and her accompanist and mother, Laurie Lee must have asked if I wanted her to accompany me for a vocal solo...not sure how it went down but I'm glad she was willing because I know how busy moms are and how precious their time is and it was a good experience for me. A couple months ago I saw auditions advertised in the Lovell chronicle for Stars of Tomorrow 2013 and I had the crazy idea of teaching Stetson a song to sing. I had an even crazier idea of accompanying him myself. I've been taking piano lessons since September so I think that helped. Anyway, I looked through all my music that I alphabetized and organized a few years ago and found a copy of Amazing Grace. I think we sang it in highschool and I ended up with a copy. Its crazy how it all happened so easily, but I honestly just started playing through it and sort of teaching it to him (played it for him on you-tube once) and before I knew it he had it memorized and was asking me a few times a week if we could sing it. I picked up an applicaton at the bank of Lovell and at Janelle's next well child visit I filled it out in the waiting room, had it notarized at the hospital and turned it into the Lamplighter. I was nervous even filling it out and not quite sure if I trusted myself to accompany him. Auditions were right around Kandace's 4th birthday and I was NERVOUS. I had never accompanied anyone before and the thought/fear of messing Stetson up was really overwhelming. I didn't think I could live with myself if I messed him up. Dad came with so he could keep an eye on Janelle (we left Kandace with gma Dorothy). When we got there I saw the peice of paper with order of perfomances and scanned it a couple of times and couldn't see his name and then I spotted it....on the very top! We were first. Luckily I only messed up a little in the middle (I was so nervous) and yes it threw him off but I whispered the words to him, he got right back on and ended it like a champ. We got lots of comments about how good he did and I was feeling pretty good about things but knew I'd feel really bad if he didn't make it. Well a couple days later we found out he made it!! By this time we had practiced it a LOT (a couple times with his school music teacher Chauna Bischoff and once with my piano teacher Ruth Hammond). Perfoming it in front of other people was helpful to both of us I'm sure. A couple weeks later we had 2 dress rehearsals which went better than the audition thank goodness and I learned something about Stetson I didn't know before--he has no stage fright. Whatsoever. I was always nervous enough for the both of us but he was as comfortable as ever and it was nice to not have to worry about him. The time of the performance came and he did great. I was so happy I didn't mess up. Later that night I watched it on the tablet that Michael used to video tape him. I watched it lots of times and felt so proud of my boy. I hope this experience ignites a little bit of interest in music and performing. I obviously am a huge fan of the performing arts and know that my life has been greatly enriched by my experiences in all-state choir, women's choir, tours, solos, its all been great and I want my kids to experience it too.
Stetson was pulling a funny face here, this is in no way indicitive of his feelings about performing. He loved it and actually asked me today if we could go back to the "concert." :) He truly loved going to Powell for rehearsals. Not sure if it was th one on one time he loved with me, playing on the tablet or what, but he was always a happy camper come rehearsal and performance time.
Winners from each age category were announced at the end (except from his age group, everyone from his K-3 got a certificate of partipation, a medal which he loves with his name on it and a bunch of certificates to local restaraunts).
Dear Stetson Simmons Asay,
I love you. I am so proud to be your mom.