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Friday, December 21, 2007

My First Paid Singing Gig

At the office Christmas party (which really was quite nice), after speeches and eating and pass-the-present, the Emcee/HR director announced we would be doing something different this year. She offered cash to the first 10 people who got up to sing a verse of seasonal song in front of everyone. Naturally, I was first up to the podium. It was my first paid singing gig, $50 for a bit of "White Christmas." I was grateful for my high school musical theater days. Only 5 people sang for their suppers! Fifty smackers each, people! I wondered briefly if they would shell out if I got up again and did a few bars of "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas", but I decided to stop while I was ahead.

I have a musical theater voice: alto, not always totally precise with the notes, but I can sing with character and decent tone and phrasing. I am often forgiven a little liberty with hitting the "center" of the notes because of my other vocal virtues and a dash of stage presence. I have virtually no range because I'm out of practice, of course. Of the other brave/shameless chanteuses, two had clear, precise choral voices and did admirably with choral favorites: O Holy Night and Silent Night. (I asked later, and yes, they both had been in choruses at one time or another. I admired the range of the fellow who sang "O Holy Night". That song is waaay out of my league.) A third could not carry a tune in a basket, but did a game job of "Rudolph". The fourth got up to help save "Rudoph", making it a duet.

After the party, I went straight to an antiques shop and bought a beautiful paperweight for $48--$50.40 with tax, perfect. It's colorful and imperfect, but it makes up for its small chip with lots of character. Appropriate to win with my singing.


Blogger Ann F said...

$50 to the first 10 people to sing a song, and only 5 people stepped up to the challenge?? Wow. I hate public speaking, and I still would have done it.

I would've sung, "Last Christmas" by Wham, because it's so totally stupid. Or "Feliz Navidad," which is just fun.

12:23 PM  
Blogger Larry Jones said...

Yay for you! But what's the deal with you people leaving $250 on the table? That's taking shyness too far, if you ask me.

Hey - you could've got five people together and rocked "Little Drummer Boy" for the rest of the dough. I'm sure you know the entire arrangement by now...

3:27 PM  
Blogger kStyle said...

Ann: Right?

Larry: Right?

We could have done a mean a capella, 5-part Little Drummer, it's true. God I hate that song.

4:08 PM  
Blogger kStyle said...

PS Ann: "Last Christmas"--ha ha ha! Thanks for reminding me of that one.

4:09 PM  
Blogger Narya said...

I also cannot carry a tune in a bucket (for Friend's birthday today, I did NOT sing to him upon awakening). But for $50? I might prove to the world how much I can not sing.

7:45 PM  
Blogger kStyle said...

Narya: Right?

You know what I realized, is that the folks in my company who are very outgoing (and there are lots of those) tend to be very competitive, as well. They would not want to sing if they could not be The Best. Then the artsy folks more likely to have musical talent tend to be introverts.

10:36 PM  
Blogger Narya said...

Which, once again, puts me in an oddball category, because I am, in many many ways, rather outgoing. But, except when actually playing a sport, not particularly competitive. Yes, I want to do things well, but I don't think that has much to do with competitiveness.

8:05 PM  
Blogger kStyle said...

I like oddballs!

5:06 PM  

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