If you follow me on Twitter, you know Mikey sings in the church children’s choir and this past week auditioned to sing the responsorial psalm on a whim. You also know he got the part (!!!) and that I’ve been a nervous wreck ever since. The choir is newly formed but already has over 50 children ranging in age from kindergarten to high school. At the risk of geeking out, the choir is exciting to witness. No matter how jaded you are, there is something about 57 warbling children that pinks up even the blackest heart. And you know what? I shouldn’t say they warble. Thanks to the directing priest, a man who crosses the passion of Bob Fosse with the compassion of Will Schuester, the kids are good.
Remarkably good for one month of practice and two masses.
Only 10-12 children auditioned, and I think that’s because we, the parents, still don’t know what we’re doing. In fact, Mikey auditioned only because my friend, Jen, pointed out the small group of children lining up at the piano after practice. Somehow I missed that announcement. Anyway, thanks to her, Mikey sang his solo this Sunday after two days of practice at home with a wrinkled song sheet and Youtube videos. Wow. People, I didn’t know stress until I learned my seven year old child was going to lead 50 children and a congregation of over 600 parishioners in song. I didn’t sleep one minute of the night before mass.
This post may be as exciting as viewing your uncle’s vacation pictures, but I’m pulling the mom card and showing off my boy. A couple of things you should note about the video. Yes, I’ve included a video. I have no shame.
- The piano commands the audio. You can hear Mikey, but I wish you could have heard his voice bouncing off those high ceilings.
- That little smile he makes before he starts singing is his “I’m nervous” smile. I’ll have to double check with Tyra, but I think it’s No. 152.
- He screwed up. He sang the 4th verse before the 3rd. You can see him realize his gaffe at 2:11. He’s not happy. The cantor has him keep singing the 4th verse.
- At 2:21, Mikey starts to wonder what the hell he’s going to do.
- The priest notices his distress and steps in to tell him not to worry while everyone is singing the chorus. “Don’t worry Mikey, no one knows the words, so no one knows you sang the wrong verse.”
- The Mister, sitting in front of me and to my left, chuckles and shakes the camera.
- Mikey makes an executive decision and flips the verses, closing with the third. He tells the cantor of his plan. He puts his hands in his pockets–a sign of nerves–and pulls them out when he notices what he’s done. They aren’t allowed to sing with their hands in their pockets.
- You can tell by his furrowed brow he is not happy. (He won’t watch this video. Of course, all he’s focused on is his mistake, which no one noticed.)
- I sat in the second row with my friends, Jen and Viola, on either side of me. I had a death grip on Jen’s hand and Viola’s forearm. Death grip. At 3:18 I let go and whisper “Sorry” to Jen. At 3:23, I chuckle and say sorry again, this time jokingly wiping the sweat from her palm. My skin was a thousand degrees from nerves, sweat pouring off me in waves. I’m sure Jen felt like she was holding hands with a used dish rag.
- At 3:30, Mikey goes back to his spot in the choir and tells his friends of his mix up.
- And they lived happily ever after.
Go ahead, see for yourself.
Okay, maybe that last bullet remains to be seen, but I’m confident we can make it happen with some hard work. If a seven year old can sing in front of a church full of adults, there isn’t much any of us can’t do.