A rare Young Audiences solo gig today at a K and 1st grade school in Monmouth Junction, NJ at a small, older school that I’ve played many times before. It was supposed to be a 9:30 morning show but the threatening snow storm moved it back to 1 pm. (It’s never a good idea to decide at 6:00 am if we want to cancel the show.) As it turned out, the snow in PA was only a few inches and Jersey got very little. I’m glad we went ahead. “A gig played is a gig paid.”
This was a group of 200 or so kids of little kids, mostly Indian and Pakistani children, a warm and involved principal and some good teachers – you can always count on K and 1st grade teachers to be loose and open for some fun.
It’s been a while since my last kids gig so I was a little rusty on a couple of tunes, but there was room for some experimentation. Lately, I’ve tried to end up the gig by asking the kids to share something from the show with their parents, and I also try to ask them to reflect on what we did, so that some of the activities can be fortified. A couple of kids mentioned singing, Bear Hunt, Cat Came Back but a couple of kids raised their hands but couldn’t say anything. I choose not to press it too far, but give them the opportunity to access what we did.
I left a couple of CDs with the principal, packed up my gear and headed back to Bethlehem.