Thursday, March 16, 2006

My Son...The Magician

Ryan (15 next month) came home from school on Monday and announced "Well it's official...I now hate my music class". My heart dropped...this is (was) one of his favourite classes.

At the beginning of the school year, the class was split into groups of 3 or more, and each group was to decide on a song to play at an up and coming concert (two weeks from now). For the past 6 weeks Ryan has been practising on his guitar and learning the tune to "Six Feet from the Edge" by Creed.

On Monday, due to one of the other groups only consisting of two students, he now has to learn "Iron Maiden" by Iron Maiden. Have you heard the guitar work in this song?? My son is a novice electric guitar player, and while I'm not going to doubt that he has the capability to get the job done...that's mighty intricate finger work to achieve in two weeks.

He reckons he'll be ok. I have to admire his spirit and give him credit for having the confidence...but in the meantime I'd be willing to have a go at his music teacher for doing that to him at such short notice. Saying that, in the past Ryan has proven himself to be someone that can be counted on to step in at the last minute to help out.

A few years ago, he had auditioned for the school production....one of the main parts...a crazy scientist character. Lots of stage time, lots of lines....he didn't get the role, but was still part of the play (he was basically prancing around on stage half-clad, with a large lightning bolt painted on his chest lol).

Come opening night, the young student that was the scientist didn't turn up...hadn't telephoned to say he'd not be there....just didn't arrive. (It was found out later that he'd gone to his cousin's birthday party instead.)

The drama teacher, beside herself with last minute hiccups and trying to organise at least 50 students on the night...grabbed Ryan..."Well Ryan, you wanted the part, here's your chance to play it"...and jammed the frizzy bright orange wig on his head. My son had all of 15 minutes to get into a white lab coat and a pair of colourful stripey pants, let alone go over his lines. He was 11 years old at the time.

He fronted up on stage, clipboard in hand and blew away the audience with his improvisation and fast thinking. This all happened on a Tuesday evening....my late night shift at the surgery...so unfortunately I never got to see him play this part. We had bought tickets to see the show the following night. I heard nothing about it from Ryan himself, so I had no idea what had happened, until other parents and students brought it up at a later date.

I don't know whether he didn't think it was worth mentioning or whether he thought I'd make a big deal about it if he told me (the kid hates me fussing over him lol)....whatever he thought or didn't, I couldn't have been prouder of him for stepping up to the plate and smacking the ball out of the park.

I've got my fingers crossed that the same will happen in his music class this year. This is the first year that counts for him as far as exams and credits are concerned and I'm finding it a difficult task sitting back, giving gentle encouragment without doing the impersonation of a heavy rock on his back all the time.

Ryan is like his Dad in many ways....traits he can be and should be, proud of. Just as his father was always so good at pulling a rabbit out of the hat when we needed him to the most...Ryan is also very capable of doing the same thing and has done so several times over the years already.

Today, I'm sitting here hoping that fluffy bunny can perform a mean-arse rendition of "Iron Maiden" in two weeks time.
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