On Friday we had notes about the performance the night before and I started to freak out because my group was scheduled for an hour and a half long rehearsal. An hour and half the day after we already performed?! I was convinced it was because I was so egregiously out of tune that clearly I was ruining the entire hour long performance with our three minute piece. (I may be a little wildly self conscious about my intonation...)
I decided that freaking out like that was terribly uncomfortable so I read a little bit of Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway which is my current personal development book and decided that I wanted to feel open to whatever the rehearsal was about since the performance was bigger than just me. I wanted to be helpful and involved and someone who was nice to work with rather than a pain. Which meant that when it rolled around to our time to rehearse I was bouncy and ready to go. Even more so when it turned out that it was about the staging and pacing of the piece rather than about my intonation. (whew!)
So we worked with the fellows Tasha and Detta and decided to slow the piece way down and stand so that we showed the length of the space and gave some perspective with the instruments. It ended up being an exciting process and made the piece 110% better even though we were using the exact same material. Since we also got rid of our music stands and memorized the whole thing- it also meant that the performance was exponentially more exciting to do- we were interacting as an ensemble even more and more to the point, we were interacting with the audience. It was much more engaging and way more fun to play. Before hand we had been huddled in the corner in front of the main screen and hiding behind our stands. It didn't feel risky and it didn't feel connected. After we changed the tempo and the placement and completely got rid of the stands (so we couldn't bury our faces in them) it was risky and connected.
That evening as a sort of second night celebration we ended up having a party in the church until the wee hours of the morning. It was brilliant. There was an 8 meter screen and the two, slightly smaller side screens with two curtains in front of each (for, effectively, seven screens layered on top of each other) filled with looping films of shapes and colors, a huge sound system (that during the performance literally shook the church), a fair amount of beer, and lots of wonderful people. I danced all night and did a bunch of hopping so as to not tear apart my ankle again. It was brilliant. (I know I said that already, but I mean it!) There is just something wonderful about a party with people who have been working closely together for six months and living with each other for a few days, all coming together to make this huge event and then dancing up a storm afterwards. Plus, it wasn't the last night so it wasn't sad yet, it was just exhilarating.