Prelude to Camp

IMG_0090Thursday, June 25, 2015
After an eight-hour drive that seemed much longer, I arrived in Interlochen and got the key to my room. As I walked out of the Stone Center with my key, I ran into my dearest son #3, Chip Miller, on his way out of the cafeteria. How exciting that I get to spend three weeks in close contact with this brilliant young pianist, who has been my son’s best friend since the day they met on these hallowed grounds in 1989. An hour later I had unloaded everything and settled in enough that I could sleep peacefully for the night. And I had a long shopping list of items that would make my stay more comfortable.


Love her so. Leslie is my son’s partner and one of the most dynamic women I’ve ever met. Last year she suggested I apply to work as a collaborative pianist at Interlochen—and now here I am!!

Friday, June 26, 2015
Breakfast, followed by check-in. Those two activities consumed a couple of hours. Then a trip to Target and Staples consumed another couple of hours. Back to campus in time for lunch, then more settling into the room and practicing my score—”Oliver!” Mid-afternoon all-staff meeting to make sure we all knew what we were doing. (As I didn’t know about the meeting until the last minute and was 10 minutes late, I clearly don’t know what I’m doing!) Dinner at Boone’s Long Lake Inn with my camp family. Back to camp and a long sit by Green Lake with my iPad and my thoughts. Received a call from my “boss”, Dr. Anne Lewis. She walked down to the lake to meet me, and a few minutes with “Dr. Anne” (so dubbed because there are two faculty members named Ann/Anne in the Theatre program) made me hope we’ll be working together the rest of our lives. This is going to be such a great summer! Then to my room, a little more practicing, and to sleep, accompanied by the sounds of diligent kids working in practice rooms. Heard my first loon call of the season tonight while sitting by the lake. The mosquitoes finally chased us away. Anne took me in to see the building where she’s staying, the DeRoy Center for Film Studies. Great state-of-the-art building, which includes some very nice “dorm” rooms.

Chip & Miss C

Son #3, Chip, with Leslie’s daughter, the Divine Miss C, who knows how to dress up any occasion! Chip and Tyler have been best friends since their first day of camp at Interlochen in 1989.

Saturday, June 27, 2015
Breakfast; practicing; working on editing for YSU; lunch, where I picked up an accompanying gig for a singer who will perform at the Staff Recital in late July; 1:00 Theatre staff meeting; 3:00 Collaborative Pianists meeting, where I picked up a daily voice lesson to accompany; editing; dinner; practicing; bed. The Intermediate and High School kids arrived today, and I heard taps played at bedtime for the first time this season.

Sunday, June 28, 2015
Quick breakfast, then editing, then Sunday Brunch with Anne at Hofbrau Steak House for a final celebration of my birthday. See how I stretched that into a two-week celebration? Pretty smart, I am. Next was a meet-the-students gathering for the Theatre program, followed by auditions for our 25 Intermediate Musical Theatre Production students. They had each submitted a soliloquoy and song on tape for admission, but had to audition again in person. That took the entire afternoon, then dinner, then the opening gathering for the entire camp population. There are students from 48 states and 38 foreign countries. And by the sounds of things, each one is very happy to be here.

Tomorrow the real work begins. I smile constantly. I am so lucky to be here!

If you aren’t on Facebook or don’t follow what I say there (ahem, a certain man who shares my life …), here are some of my posts for the same period as this blog post.

On the road again! — feeling excited. (6/25; 9:49 a.m.)

Since the very first time I visited Tyler at Interlochen Arts Camp, I’ve felt it was an absolutely magical place. Now I listen at my dorm room window as I hear the last 10 minutes of flutists and clarinetists and harpists practicing before the magic 10:00 hour arrives. I feel incredibly blessed to be working here this summer. Thank you, Tyler and Leslie, for encouraging me to do this. — feeling happy at Interlochen Center for the Arts. (6/25; 9:54 p.m.)

I think the last time I drank milk out of a plastic cup was in about 1962 at Camp Kulaqua in High Springs, FL. It tastes exactly the same – fresh and new. (Somewhere there’s a photo of me sitting on a chair under a pine tree practicing my oboe.) (6/26; 8:48 a.m.)

I fight back tears as I think how lucky I am to have this opportunity. — feeling honored at Interlochen Center for the Arts. (6/26; 10:37 a.m.)

I guess everybody has to do it at least once. First full day and locked myself out of my room. Sure am getting my exercise walking back and forth to Stone Center to get and return the spare key! (6/26; 10:29 p.m.)

Two wildlife moments from my first full day in Interlochen:
-Was driving up the highway to visit the gas station, and had to stop for a mama duck and her 12 ducklings following her across the road.
-Last night I was sitting down by the lake observing the sunset and enjoying the beauty when I heard my first loon call of the season. (6/27; 8:52 a.m.)

Overheard in the library: “I’ll go get an LP for the Dvorák.” I’m in some wonderful, artistic alternate universe. (6/27; 9:39 a.m.)

Sounds outside my window:Intermediate Girls going around the circle, getting to know each other. “Hi, Elizabeth; Hi, Margaret.” Sweet sounds. (6/27; 11:29 a.m.)

Just stood for ten minutes with four other collaborative pianists discussing audition techniques and page-turning tricks. Died and gone to pianistic heaven! (6/27; 3:17 p.m.)

Sounds outside my window: 7th-9th grade girls singing at the tops of their lungs. In tune. (6/27; 5:09 p.m.)

Sounds outside my window: Taps.
So the first edition of “Taps” came at 9:00 for the Junior Girls. Just now I heard a second edition, at a much closer range. That would be for Intermediate Girls. This will be my nightly serenade for the next six weeks.
Accompanying those trumpet sounds are the tones coming from practice rooms. These are soloists preparing for concerto competition. Tonight I have heard two different horn players and a pianist. (6/27; 9:32 p.m.)

This morning’s ear worm:
“I shall scream! I shall scream!
For the safety of my virtue I shall scream!” (6/28; 9:38 a.m.)

And it begins! Here we go, 25 7th-9th graders heading off to auditions for Oliver! (6/28; 1:50 p.m.)

Audition True Confession: Music I’ve never seen before intimidates me. — feeling stressed. (6/28; 3:45 p.m.)

Sounds outside my window: Taps. Followed by applause. (6/28; 9:35 p.m.)

Interlochen Arts Camp – 2015 – Week 1

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