MusicMonday spurs Holiday memories of a Sleigh Ride

Two draft horse stand in winter snow field with sleigh bells around neck and sleigh behind.

Courtesy of Cosmogarden on Flickr.

Draft horses crunching-
winter sparkles between breaths;
sleigh bells, hay bales, we.

I played the string bass in the high school symphony orchestra.

My favorite performance piece was Gustav Holst‘s “The Planets.” It took three-and-one-half hours to perform.  However, Christmas and the Holiday Season were altogether different. That’s when I forgot all about the sonorous profundity of the classics and embraced the quaint, the frolicking and memorable.

Leroy Anderson

My favorite Holiday piece was Leroy Anderson’s Sleigh Ride. The melody catchy and bright. There was nothing like the clack of the of horse hoofs and the sound of the sleigh bells jingling to awaken tales of winters past.

One afternoon while the orchestra was rehearsing for the seasonal School Holiday Assembly, the second violins and violas lost tempo. Actually, they stopped playing. Mrs. Allen, our Conductor, was stopped in amazement. She was just about to reprimand them for faltering when someone pointed to the empyt auditorium seats.

The woman bundled in the heavy wool coat stood midway down the aisle. She apologized for disrupting our rehearsal and as quickly said that she had never heard a lovelier rendition of her father’s song.

The baton dropped.

She told us how he would sing or rather hum the tunes to her when she was young. I have since forgoten why she said she was at our school, but to know you were playing your heart’s desire before the composer’s daughter was a deeply emotional moment.

Music Monday: “Sleigh Ride”

This MusicMonday, Twitter‘s Daily Question asked, “my favorite holiday song is…”
What’s yours? Share here.

Visit the Leroy Anderson official website  here.
Photo courtesy of Cosmogarden, “Jingle Bells”.

Amos White is a Social Media Marketing Evangelist and public speaker.
Follow Amos on Twitter @Mos42
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