Aardvark Alley

Lutheran Aardvark

Confessional Lutheran theology, hagiography, philosophy, music, culture, sports, education, and whatever else is on the fevered mind of Orycteropus Afer

16 August 2005
  The Aard Daughter Had a Pretty Fair Day
A sweet time in Sedalia.

Grand Piano
Today was the first day of school. After opening chapel and my customary Tuesday morning Bible class, I came back home to change and we headed off to the Missouri State Fair. Normally, I wouldn't consider the Fair an excuse to cut classes, but #2 daughter was entered in the piano competition.

We headed into the now-familiar environs of State Fair Community College and searched out her room. Finding it, Mrs. Vark and I endured Little Aardvark's fidgeting display, watched her spill (and clean up) part of her Dr. Pepper, and settled in to hear two groups of contestants. She was in the "Moderately Difficult III" class, which was coupled with "Moderately Difficult II," so we got a pretty good display of budding talents among the two groups.

Little Aardvark drew the final slot in the second group: First we waited, then we listened, then we applauded the first group's ribbons, and then we listened some more. Although my musical talents could be stored in a beer mug with plenty of room for a twelve-ounce pour, I heard distinct bobbles in her two main challengers' playing. Oddly enough, it happened with their "old" composers' works (Bach and Beethoven) and not their more contemporary pieces.

Finally our baby sat down to play. She was absolutely spot-on with her first piece, a lilting yet melancholy rendition of Briant and Zatman's Chanson. Could she keep it up for her second selection, Schumann's Knecht Ruprecht, or would the "old" composer come back to bite her, too? The quick tempo (¼ note = 126) and a score of almost all eighth and sixteenth notes means this baby moves. If you fall off, you have a hard time getting back on.

Wouldn't you know it, those old Germanic guys went three-for-three. However, a brief loss of tempo wasn't as severe as the problems others had and her overall playing was, in the judge's opinion, quite outstanding. Mrs. Vark got her tears from listening to the Aard Daughter's playing stopped in time to start all over with dry eyes when the judge announced our Little Aardvark as the first place winner.

You can keep your champion hogs and heifers; I'll hold on to my Blue Ribbon Baby.
 
Comments:
Congratulations to your daughter on her blue ribbon performance in the ol' Show-Me State Fair piano competition! That brings back similar memories from the late 50s (the room was not air-conditioned then).

It was shortly after that (1960, to be precise) at the Sedalia Centennial celebration, that I was introduced to the "Maple Leaf Rag" of Scott Joplin, and the music of other ragtimers like Arthur Marshall (I heard him play in Sedalia), James Scott, and Joseph Lamb.

None, as far as I know, were Lutheran.
 
Thank you. I've noted and passed on your praise to the Little Vark.

Orycteropus +
 
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