Welcome to JOYFUL REFLECTIONS. Also welcome to APRIL!!!! Spring is AWESOME. Enjoy some beautiful TULIPS from Biltmore!!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

My Piano Playing Days

It's hard for me to remember back THAT far, but when I was young, I played the piano. Along with most of my friends, I took piano lessons from Mrs. Williams (on Wyandotte Ave. in my hometown of Big Stone Gap, VA) from the time I was about 7 yrs. old through high school. To be honest, I never enjoyed playing the piano very much--even though my mother LOVED for me to 'show-off' for family and friends when they'd visit (which I did NOT enjoy doing).

I remember that my mother told me that I wouldn't have to wash or dry the dishes after supper in the evenings IF I would practice the piano for about 30 minutes. I wasn't a FOOL... I practiced the piano!!!! Since I came from a very musical family, I actually became a pretty good pianist... I remember going to Pennington Gap every year in the Spring/Summer to participate in regional contests. My Senior year in high school, I received a High School Diploma in Music. The picture above was of me in the local newspaper after I received this special diploma. (Sorry the quality is horrible.)

When I first attended college (Tennessee Wesleyan College in Athens, TN) in 1960-61, I intended to major in piano. BUT--after one semester with a new piano teacher (whom I didn't care for at all), I switched to voice. I had always been involved in Glee Club and in choirs and small groups while in high school, but never thought about majoring in voice until college. One reason I chose Tennessee Wesleyan College at that time was because they had a fantastic college touring choir. The choir came to Big Stone Gap when I was in high school--and a couple of students stayed at our home. That SOLD me--and I decided that I wanted to be a part of that choir someday! And luckily, I was.

I had the privilege of singing under Mr. Jack Houts at Tennessee Wesleyan--and also taking voice lessons from him. The piano did come in handy throughout college since I could play for myself (and others) while singing. After getting married, we bought a piano--which moved with me for years and years. But--I never seemed to find the time (or the interest) to sit down and practice or just play it. SO---finally when I was in Texas, I sold that piano and haven't missed it to this day. But---I am glad that I learned to play ---and I thank my mother for all of her encouragement (and urging) when I was young.

The picture above was sent to me by a friend. It also isn't very good quality since it is a newspaper print. BUT--it was taken at one of Mrs. Williams' yearly piano recitals. The names are listed (which is good, if you have a magnifying glass!) because I'm not sure how many I could recognize these days!!!! I am on the front row to the left of the girl sitting at the piano!

These days, I mostly enjoy music by just listening---and that's probably a good thing!!!! ha

Have a great Sunday!