I have three recitals a year, the pizza recital in spring, the pool party recital in summer, and the sub sandwich recital in December. The recitals have been categorized by my students according to what we have to eat at our post-performance reception.
As each recital approaches they start asking me, "Which recital is this?" Meaning, are we having pizza afterwards or subs afterwards? (I supply the main course while the student's families bring the sides and desserts).
There's generally no confusion in the summer, though, as everybody knows that summer means the pool party recital, where the main course is burgers and dogs.
The summer, or pool party recital, however, has a special set of logistical issues to deal with.
We have our winter and spring recital receptions in the ConneXions Center hall of Peace Lutheran Church where we perform. It's a fantastic venue.
And for feasting afterwards:
But after the summer recital we all have to haul tush two blocks up the street from the ConneXions Center to the Foxboro Pool where Tom, Tommy, Randy, and whatever other cheap labor I can enlist have the burgers and dogs cooking on the grill and the tables set up and ready to receive the sides and desserts that the students' families will bring.
But it all works out. Unless it rains. Then it's kind of a disaster. I went through a spell of about 3 or 4 years when it poured rain on every summer recital night.
But for tomorrow the weather forecast is chance of rain: 0%.
That's a four smiley-face forecast! 8) 8) 8) 8)
But all that is just the challenge of the post-recital pool party/cook-out. I haven't even touched on the challenge of trying to pull together student performances over the summer, when between vacations, camps, sports, and all the summer activites that kids are immersed in, everybody's gone half the time, and when they're home they'd rather be out at the pool than sitting at the piano bench practicing.
So why do I even attempt to hustle together a recital every summer?
Because if I didn't I don't think any of us would stay on task from June to September. We'd all slack off then it would take until December to catch up again.
Anyway, that is my theory. Maybe in my secret heart I believe that my students wouldn't want to give up their lessons or their recital over the summer. And the pool party is my show of gratitude to them for spending all summer polishing up their pieces.
And because they faithfully stuck to their practicing all summer long, however they perform tonight they'll all shine.