We were lucky to leave with the boys this morning. The hosts from Holy Cross Lutheran wanted to keep our charming gentlemen; they were so impressed. Last night a boy wasn’t feeling so well, and didn’t want to sleep alone. The host was moved when an older boy volunteered to share his bed with the young one.
Maine was the eastern most destination of tour, so today we started heading west. Aaron gave a great pep talk to our slowly waking boys. At the end of his talk he invited them to say positive things about each other. Several of them took the opportunity to speak well of their fellow choir brothers. After each affirmation the boys yelled what they learned from the Boston Tea Party Museum, “HUZZAH!!! Stewart also invited the boys to tell him about their host homes. Here are some moments they shared…
- I slept on the porch.
- They had really cool Native American things
- They helped with my sunburn
- They had a cool car and took us around the beach
- I woke up very early and the birds were chirping.
- A duck timer woke us up.
- Our host had a convertible.
- They had a hand drawn map from Native Americans; it was the only one of two in the world.
- We played board games with our host families.
We traveled through three states today: Maine, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts. The bus ride was typical: videos games, card games, naps, and books. Since we’re nearing the end of our tour, I wanted to start interviewing our Graduates. The first on my list was Donovan Schumacher. He’s sad but excited to move on. With his extra time he’s planning to do more at his school: Anoka High School for the Arts. Here are some questions I asked him…
What has been your favorite moment as a Choirboy? When I got all the standing ovations for “Pueri concinite”.
What was your favorite activity on tour? The Jet Boat Tour
What was your favorite Choirboy event this year? Broadway, Beatles, and Boys.
Have you ever sang Happy Birthday to yourself? YES. What was it like the first time? Not hard at all: I shared a birthday weekend with two other people. I’ve never sang it by myself.
What is your favorite book? I hate reading.
Is there a character from any book, game, or movie that you think about sometimes? The popular characters. I strive to get my name known. I want people to look up to me too.
What is something that worries you? Musically, I fear songs like choral music are going to be forgotten. To lose a chunk of those songs with their emotion would be a big deal.
Who inspires you? My dad. He really got me into music, played Beatles music. That got me into music. If he hadn’t been in the choir I probably wouldn’t have been in the choir.
Thanks for the interview, Dono.
We arrived in Auburn, NY this afternoon, and the boys had an early dinner of baked chicken, corn, and fried potatoes. They finished and went up to the sanctuary for a quick warm up before they sang for the 5:30 mass. They were in awe as they admired the ornamental paintings and pillars. Ornate iconography was everywhere they looked. St. Mary’s Catholic church was a large and resonant space for the boys to sing in.
After singing for the 5:30 mass, the boys did their tour jobs, rehearsed, and changed into their concert uniforms. I hope you all enjoyed the live portion of the concert. We didn’t stay live long enough to capture the special moment during the Q & A part. The last question was given from a boy sitting in the audience. He asked “Who has the best voice?” The boys pointed to a variety of older boys to answer the question, but that wasn’t it. Aaron took the opportunity to meet him, and asked him to come forward. Nathan was star-struck. You could see in his eyes how enamored he was to be in front the cool kids. He was also surprised when Aaron asked him to conduct the next song, “Over the Rainbow”. He was reluctant at first, but after giving the first downbeat he went on to conduct the whole song while Aaron sat in the pew next to him. The boys had never been so animated. They loved the magical moment.
Nathan was part of the group when they all gathered for desserts after the concert. The boys enjoyed time with him and each other before leaving with their host families for the night. Tomorrow they’ll be back to St. Mary’s to sing at their morning mass, and we hope to see Nathan there as well.