Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Agnus Dei, Lord have mercy (part 3)

I realize it's taken me three days to blog about the Agnus Dei performance, so I'm going to wrap it up. This wandering focus has been an issue for me in writing fiction as well - this "digression within a digression," as one of my wonderful draft readers noted when reading my latest manuscript. See? I just did it again. Now I'm all set to go off on a fiction-writing tangent.

So, yes, I was a bobblehead. Similar to what Lorelei shared in the comments about her Coppelia performance, my head started to tremble as soon as we took our places on the risers, and it lasted through the entire first song (which was slow, meditative and Gregorian chant-like, making it impossible for me to conceal my bobble head by bouncing a little to the rhythm). I don't know how the soloists do it - how they step out into the spotlight, microphone in hand, knowing that any little warble or off-note will be magnified throughout the sanctuary. I actually thought at one point that I should just walk off the stage because I was probably being such a distraction, and then I thought, "No, that would be obnoxious. If I'm going to look stupid throughout this whole cantata, then so be it. This isn't about me, anyway." Which was when the trembling stopped. Because I was right. This wasn't about me. It was about God's love, and his goodness and mercy toward us. My job was to stop obsessing about how stupid I looked and SING. So I did. And it was awesome.

Afterward, during the dessert reception downstairs, my husband looked surprised when I asked him how bad the shaking looked. "What shaking?" he said. Yeah, right. So I asked our son, the master of brutal honesty (who once told me, after I'd had my morning coffee but hadn't yet brushed my teeth, "Mom, not to be mean or anything, but your breath smells a little like poo."). Now he just looked at me and said, "What shaking?" So, apparently, all my worry was for naught. Apparently, my head doesn't shake as bad as it did in college, when the tremor was visible from several rows back. And the thing is, even if it did, who cares? The next time I'm lucky enough to dress up and sing about the greatest love in the world, I'd better be prepared for my ears to start wiggling spontaneously and my nose hairs to catch fire if need be, because the dressing up and the excitement and the singing won't be about me anyway.

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