For me, the beginning of the month is usually a good time to evaluate my priorities and make a plan for action. So without further ado, here's what's going on in May:
WCMW. Four concerts, ten guest artists, four weeks. Steve and I are so excited about this year's series of events - everything kicks off this Saturday night! Of course, being that it's Thursday, we're still madly working through our to-do list. Program books are being printed this morning, concert reception food will be prepped Saturday morning, and we'll welcome our first guest artists (coming down from Brattleboro) Saturday afternoon! Join us for an evening of sultry, fiery jazz tunes if you're in the neighborhood and stay tuned for updates on the blog throughout the month!
Finals. This has been one long semester. I may be more excited about finals than my students! For my lecture class (28 students), the final is a 10-page paper (I know, what was I thinking?). For my class piano students (13 between two sections), the final is a jury demonstrating major scales, solo repertoire, accompanying repertoire, harmonization, transposition, and improvisation. As of today, there are just two more teaching days and juries left to go! Come on, summer!
Concert/Recital Preparation. This weekend, I'm organizing a student recital for the community music lesson program at Fitchburg State University. That will mark the end of the term for the six private students I've had this spring. Next month, Steve and I are planning a joint recital for our teaching studios in Westminster which means our lessons this month are focused on choosing repertoire, polishing, and preparing for performance.
The Sanctuary Choir (my adult choir at church, pictured above) will be presenting a Sunday afternoon program of music early next month. Last month, I chose the repertoire and we spent part of one rehearsal voting for our favorites. Now that I have a program of anthems and a narrator on deck, I need to put everything in order and write the narration!
Balance and adventure. The last few months have been crazy. In January, I had to let go of planning way ahead and embrace the "sink or float" mentality, taking things one week (and in some cases, one day) at a time. That recital in two weeks? I can't think about that until I've gotten through the recital this week. That webinar we're doing next month? I can't work on that PowerPoint until I'm done with my slides for class next week. As hard as this has been for me to get used to it's reconfirmed to me the necessity of balancing my priorities. The big things on my calendar this spring were all priorities... just not all at the same time.
Additionally, while these things are important, there is something to be said for living a life of adventure. Things change. Be open. Sometimes, spending the evening talking with SD is more important than finishing that blog post for tomorrow. Sometimes, Sunday afternoon naps are more important than catching up on emails. Sometimes, taking time for a walk is more important than grading papers. Those other things will get done. In that moment, choose what matters. Choose the people you love. Choose the things that fire you up. Choose the things that inspire you. As things wind down this month and next, I want to continue to challenge myself to live a life of balance and adventure.
Image Credit: Samirah Evans, personal, Steve Collar, personal