Okay, I’ll admit there are some reasons why living in a city of a million people is not too bad. We have culture!
I knew we had culture here. I knew, I knew! That there had to be an orchestra somewhere in this town. So, I’ve been putting out feelers, spreading the word, asking around to see if there might be some kind of orchestra somewhere that might be looking for an oboist. I’m not picky, right?
Well, it turns out that the word “orquesta” in Spanish covers a wide range of orchestras. Like salsa orchestras. So, when I mention to people that I’m a musician looking for an orchestra, a common response is “Well, I have a friend…” and usually ends up being a cumbia band, or salsa, or a choir. For example:
“I’m looking for an orchestra, I play oboe.”
“I have a friend! …”
“lemme stop you right there, is it a classical orchestra? A symphonic or philharmonic orchestra, that kind of orchestra?”
“Yeah. Classical. Yeah”
“hmmm! What kind of music do they play? Like, Beethoven, or Mozart…?”
“Well, you know, like… Salsa?”
But not everyone I talked to had no idea what I was talking about, apparently, and Wednesday a week ago I had a breakthrough. I had told some of the people in my Zumba class about my hopes and desires concerning music of the classical variety and they were like…. cool. But then! Wednesday a week ago, one of the ladies said, “Hey, aren’t you the one who plays the oboe?” And I said “yeeeees?” And she said “Well, I have this friend… and he’s the conductor of the orchestra at the fine arts school, and well, they’re looking for an oboist. Can I give you his phone number?”
So I gave him a call on Thursday, after psyching myself up all day, I gave the man a call:
“hola, yo me llamo Abby, y yo estaba hablando con una amigo quien me dijo que usted esta buscando una oboista?”
Luckily I was saved from having to pull out my Spanish skills, as the guy speaks English, and was super excited about the prospect of me being in the orchestra. We rehearse twice a week, and I am actually about to head out to a rehearsal in about an hour here.
It’s amazing how finding a group of people who are into the same thing you are can really change your quality of life. I haven’t really gotten to know the musicians really well yet, but for right now, just making music together is enough.