Sunday, December 19, 2010

Fw: Merry Christmas!!! :D


Our plans got changed around.  They made it so P-day is still on Saturday for Christmas, but we get to email today (mostly so we can still email our weekly letter to President).  Sorry about that.  ;P

Hope you guys are enjoying the Christmas season!

Yesterday night was the Missionary Christmas Musical Fireside, which turned out beautifully.  It was a really spiritual concert.  Sister Hye-Won Koh performed a John Schmidt arrangement of "I Saw Three Ships", which was really cool.  I love John Schmidt.  :D  Then she also played a really nice arrangement of "Away in a Manger", which almost brought me to tears.  The missionary choir performed as well as could be as expected.  We performed "Carol of the Bells" (I wasn't sure why Elder Swenson picked that one; that one's hard even for professional choirs... D: ), "O Holy Night", "As Shepherds Kept Their Lowly Watch", "Guard Him, Joseph", and "Christmas in Our Hearts" (a traditional Filipino Christmas song.  It's pretty cool).  Elder Swenson had me come up with an accompaniment for "Carol of the Bells", which turned out pretty cool.  I also performed my own arrangement of "What Child Is This?", and I also came up with my own accompaniment for the piece Sister McFate performed, "Baby Tucked Softly", which I think was written by her grandfather.  I was the only pianist that didn't use any sheet music, because the sheet music hasn't been written yet.  After everyone else performed, there was a special musical guest (I can't remember his full name off the top of my head right now, but his nickname was Brother June).  He outdid EVERYONE.  It was unbelievable.  He played a medley of different variations on Christmas songs, which went through different classical and jazz styles, and it was amazing.  His fingers at some points were almost a blur.  He played incredibly fast chromatic scales cleanly, making it look easy.  It blew me away. He had music with him, but he didn't really always use it (he would've had to have turned the pages a lot more if he was really using it the whole time...).  I'm not sure whether he had it memorized or he was just improvising.  It was probably some of both.  Anyway, again, the whole event turned out to be a success.  They weren't able to record the fireside, so I don't have a recording of it.  Sorry.. :/  Hopefully next time.  Anyway, my next project is going to be working up the John Schmidt piece "All of Me," hopefully in time for the April fireside (no promises, though.. I haven't had a lot of time to practice it much so far, but hopefully I'll be able to work on it).

I sent your package last Tuesday.  It was expensive.  :D  It's always fun when it costs four times as much to send the package as it did to buy the actual contents of the package.. >.>  They said it would take 7 days to get you.  Hopefully it'll get to you guys before Christmas.  They didn't have your guys' package at the fireside yesterday, so I'll probably get it on transfer day on the 29th.  Ah, well.  It's the thought that counts.  :D

Anyway, I'll talk to you all on Saturday (Friday for you).  I'll probably call using the zone leaders' cell phone, since there's not really a land line available in this area.  I'll probably call Mom's cell phone.  I'm hoping it won't be too expensive.

Have a very Merry Christmas!! :D Ingat kayo lagi!

Elder David Jones

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