Picture Mom at the SYS Mega Concert

Yesterday (Sunday) I attended the Sacramento Youth Symphony Mega Concert. It was called the Mega Concert because it featured every single orchestra and ensemble from the SYS.

Well, I was all ready to take pictures. I even checked my camera the night before to make sure it had a full battery!

But…when I arrived there and started taking pictures, I discovered my battery was only one-quarter full! Either my indicator was lying or something drained my battery in a hurry. This was a total bummer and limited how many pictures I could take. I was trying to stretch out my battery to last through the entire concert. So I took the obligatory all-orchestra shots and did not have any opportunity for creative experimentation.


However, before the concert, I was blissfully unaware of the precarious state of my battery, so I wandered around trying out some new shots. The high school where the concert was held has very colorful windows.

I tried to get a picture of my daughter playing with the window background but she kept trying to hide from me. I got lucky and got one relatively decent shot.

That was when I discovered my battery was low. No more fun pictures.

The concert started with the Classic Orchestra, the beginning orchestra. They are quite amazing considering this is their first time playing in an orchestra! Here they are done and the conductor Mr. Brucker is leading them all in a bow.

Next was a flute ensemble. I think this was the intermediate one. The advanced ensemble played later.

Then a string quartet. They were amazing.

Then the Academic Orchestra.

Got out my huge zoom lens. I thought it was cool when all the violinists lifted their bows to pluck the strings.

Next was the other flute ensemble. The amazing thing about this was one girl got sick so another girl (in the black) dress subbed in with only a few hours’ notice. Wow. That was pretty amazing.

Then finally, the Premiere Orchestra! My favorite, of course — because my daughter is in it. I try to be an unbiased mother… but alas, I fail.

Man, I love my zoom lens. I was halfway back in the auditorium (you can tell how far back by the picture above, which shows the whole orchestra). Both the picture above and picture below are taken from the same seat! I was a lazy photographer and didn’t walk around. Well, actually it was because my battery was low so I knew I couldn’t take all that many pictures and wanted to get every orchestra.

But then — I discovered the balcony! I totally forgot about the balcony! Duh! What kind of photographer is that, who doesn’t scope out the location? Ah well… next concert I will sit up on the balcony and get better shots.

As you can see, the view up there was way better.

There was even room to walk around in the back, so I was able to get this shot.

And lo and behold — proof that my daughter IS in the premiere orchestra! Before this I could never see her, other than when she came out and left the stage, as she is always buried in a sea of black and orange. (Clothes and violins.) There she is in, the upper left corner, the Asian girl with the glasses. That’s my daughter!!!! (Puff, puff in pride.)

Here’s another view, with the brass players in the back. I always wonder if the people in front of them develop hearing problems thanks to decibels of trumpet blasts in their ears.

A closer view. What an awesome zoom lens! I love that lens!

And my favorite instrument — drums! I love drums! Kettle drums, snare drums, bass drums, taiko drums, drum kits — I love them all. I wonder if I would be an amazing drummer if I started as a kid? Alas, I started too late in life…

They played Victory at Sea, which is a totally awesome song. It sounds like waves crashing. In large part due to the, ahem, drums. (Did I mention I love drums?)

Ok, that sounds kinda bad because my daughter plays violin. I should say I love violin. But. I don’t. Cuz I used to play violin and tortured myself and my family in the process. I am sooo glad I no longer play violin. I’m sure everyone around me is glad too.

But I totally LOVE my daughter and I LOVE how she plays violin!!!! I love it love it love it. What a blessing to hear the sweet music she can make on that instrument. Amazing. One person makes it sound like an angel. The other person makes it sound like a torture instrument. Well, we know who is the more gifted of the two.

Lest it be said that I am biased over the left side of the stage, I DID take a picture of the cellos on the right. I like cellos and basses too.

Then the concert was over and so Mr. Neumann shook the hand of the concertmaster. I liked the bright pink flowers too. That added a nice touch. Black black black black orange orange orange orange BRIGHT HOT PINK! One of these things is not like the other…

And then a final bow from all the leaders. And a cute little girl with more flowers.

Afterwards… food in the reception area! Back to those stained glass windows!

My battery made it all the way through after all. I got a lot more shots at the end when I discovered my battery was still there. Now time to process them all for delivery to the SYS office…

A Yee

Angela Yee is a professional designer (graphic design, stage design, interior design — angelayeedesign.com) and teaches leadership skills at strategysketchnotes.com.

4 comments to “Picture Mom at the SYS Mega Concert”

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  1. Glen Nielsen - March 16, 2010

    Impressive zoom lens … amazing that you got that close up from your seat! My favorites are the ones with stained-glass backgrounds. The balcony shots were very cool … loved the angles. Thanks for posting … I could practically hear the music!

  2. Glen Nielsen - March 16, 2010

    Oh, one more … my absolute favorite shot was the one of the violinist in front of the stained-glass … the reason I like it so much is 1. the way she pops out from the image, and 2. the way you captured the stained glass viewed through the right lens of her glasses … that was a stroke of brilliance!

  3. Megan - March 17, 2010

    ACK! Vivace strings first, not classic orchestra. 🙂

    Then Classic. Then Academic. Premier don’t have white tops–we wear all black. And we’re only in the shot from the top. 😀

  4. Angela Yee - March 18, 2010

    Oops, I got all the names mixed up. Sorry about that! Picture Mom focuses on taking pictures but needs to improve in name documentation!

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