The Dream, Part II

Posted: under Art, Creative Mom, Identity, Motherhood, Music, Performance, San Antonio Silver Stars, Tulsa Shock, WNBA.
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There were kids, dancers, military personnel, security guards, and athletes backstage at the AT&T Center, chaotically buzzing around while  I did my “sound check” into a dry wireless mic.  My sound was presumably live in some faraway control booth, where an invisible wizard checked my audio levels before the pre-game show began.  A friendly crew member timed me with a stopwatch on her phone as I ran through my song, in a cavernous din under the arena bleachers.  Having rehearsed with a recorder at home, I was pretty confident that I could clock the anthem within the required 90 seconds.  When I finished, I handed back the microphone and was told that I had 10 seconds to spare.

Waiting in a curtained-off area with Silver Stars In-Arena announcers, Cleto Rodriguez and Kennedy Hardman, along with some fans who were to compete in the “human bowling” competition during one of the game breaks,  I sipped bottled water and rubbed Neuro-Biologix Calming Cream on my forearms and the backs of my legs. I had my iPhone cued up to an app that would play my starting pitch (Eb, if you’re curious) into the ear bud in my ear.  When it was time to walk onto the court, I shoved my device into my back pocket and continued to hum the note, for dear life.

I waited at center court for my carefully orchestrated cue.  The WNBA players–my heroes!–finished their warmup and placed basketballs on rolling racks on either side of me.  I thought about all the players who had stood on that court–Kobe, Lebron, MJ, plus Candace, Tamika, and Diana–and I kept breathing deep into my belly, despite the butterflies jetting about.  I knew that I had prepared as much as I possibly knew how, and that in just a few moments, my experience as “singer” would be over, and I would return to “fan.”  What I wanted most was a) to enjoy myself and b) to honor the athletes who had inspired me to be there.

Singing the anthem was a blast.  Literally!  It was so fun to sing and to hear my voice echoing off the top of that massive arena ceiling.  It was gratifying to walk away knowing that the only thing I could have done to have been better prepared was to have already done it before.  And it was so sweet to walk back to my seat afterward and enjoy the beaming smiles of my kids and husband, who had tried to photograph my performance, but were blocked by the two “human flags” that were also part of the pre-game show.  Poor kids!…they’ll have to settle for watching Mom on the Jumbotron!  To top it all off, it was a great game:  although the Silver Stars lost, since their top three starters were out with knee injuries, the Shock‘s Riquna Williams set a new WNBA scoring record.  My dad said her hot shooting was inspired by my anthem!

I left the AT&T Center with a list of things I’d like to improve next time, and since I was invited back for next season, there will be a next time.  But even if there weren’t, I left with a new lease on life as a singer and performer, especially after learning (several days later, thank God!) that attendance at the game was 6,650, including the UT Longhorn women’s basketball team, and, over in the next section, San Antonio Spur Danny Green.  I’m still wrapping my brain around what it all means, that I did that, in front of all of those people, all by my lonesome with a mic.  Crazy!  And I’m still singing the anthem, at least once a day, just to stay fresh.

4 Comments

  1. Katherine Torrini Says:

    Yeah, Tricia! You did AMAZING! CAN I say I knew you when” yet? :)

  2. admin Says:

    Thank you, Katherine! Since you posted a comment (and presumably, even read!!) my blog….you get to say whatever you like. :)

  3. DJ Salisbury Says:

    Brava! Brava, diva!

  4. Daniel Brunello Says:

    Great job Tricia! You have a beautiful voice! :)



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