Love ‘em/hate ‘em


Most parents have a love/love relationship with the band director. Most students have a hate/hate relationship with the band director. Most booster committee members have a love/hate relationship with the band director.

Wanna know why? I thought so.

The band director puts on a great face for the parents. He smiles, he acts friendly, he calls their child by name, he sounds all knowledgeable, he appears to be the Grand Poobah of All Things Musical. Parents are assured and reassured and comforted and yada yada yada.

The band director does not put on a great face for the students. Sometimes he really treats them like crap. And worse, he treats them like crap in front of their peers. I’ve heard him say stuff that would make me want to slide under my chair if he said those things to me. So, the kids don’t like him.

The booster committee is caught in between. We see firsthand what he says to the kids, and we just want to slug him. Or walk out and say he can shove his booster committee up his ass. And at the same time, we can see the bigger picture. This guy is trying to corral 30-plus kids, teach them music, and get them into a cohesive unit that will actually produce something worth listening to in a month at the first band concert. Yeah, concert.

This guy has to put on a concert with kids that are squeaking their reeds and blowing farts out of their trumpets because they are all still learning. Holy shit. No wonder he has to shout and scream and motivate in whatever method seems right at the moment. His ass is on the line! He’s got parents who are going to judge him in ONE MONTH according to how their precious kiddos sound in concert.

So, yeah. Love him for taking on the challenge of shaping and forming these kids into a single music-making machine. Hate him for making them feel humiliated and discouraged with his abrupt and seemingly heartless words.

I decided long ago that I would never ever be a band director. Yo

But I might start my own band one day, wink.

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