An elegant party requires focused planning, as well as thoughtful inspiration. In my experience, the fine touches creating elegance are more likely deliberately crafted decisions, rather than the happy result of random chance, although both are important.
Over the years, I’ve found that practice develops the skill of combining these two strategies. No one is born an event planner. Everyone learns, and here is a case where experience really counts. It’s true, whether you’re a full-time professional event planner, or simply planning your own once-in-a-lifetime 50th anniversary party.
The same applies to the musicians who provide music to create the perfect atmosphere for the party. Calling on our experience to carefully design what to do and when, we always leave room in the plan to seize spur-of-the-moment opportunities.
Let me begin with a story. Here we are last March 22, entertaining V.I.P. guests at a cocktail party in the lobby of the Center for Performing Arts, in Mountain View. Thank you for the wonderful photo, Tammy and James Lau.
This was our fourth year playing for this event, preceding an annual awards ceremony. Each party is slightly different, but always with an eye toward helping everyone enjoy being in the midst of a special occasion. We’ve learned what music will set the right mood here, and we’re always ready to chat with guests and play their favorite requests.
I attend parties like this all the time, and I can hardly remember my life prior. Similarly, I’ve been married nearly 36 years now, and, believe me, a person easily grows accustomed to that lovely, endless conversation. It’s on my mind now, because my wife is out of town on business for 10 days, and in between our phone calls, my lonely mind tends to wander in strange directions.
Does this happen to you, too? Yes, my thoughts eventually return to parties and weddings, but what detours!
This morning, something (who knows what) reminded me of an idle conversation with a few friends studying Biology back in college. We wondered how to decide which stage of an organism’s life cycle was the adult, for which all the earlier stages live to prepare. Seems simple enough, until you realize “cycle” means no beginning and no end.
So our question became whether the egg was actually the technique the chicken uses to produce the next generation of chickens, or was the chicken an elaborate technology the egg uses to produce the next generation of eggs. Could it be that there is no “adult” stage, except for what we make up, in order to have a simple, coherent notion to believe in?
It wasn’t long before we were wondering whether the DNA molecule itself is the dominant life form on our planet. In other words, is DNA using all living organisms to create the next generation of DNA molecules? If so, is this molecule operating with a sense of purpose, survival instinct, or at least some kind of awareness?
I remember thinking this conversation was getting ridiculous. That kind of idle thinking is great mental exercise, but far from the style I usually use every day. These days, I focus to help people create the kind of atmosphere they want for their weddings and parties. Over the years, I’ve developed a practical, problem-solving style of thinking, and now that my wife is out-of-town, I find my mind losing focus a little more frequently.
Even while she’s out of town, though, the Magnolia Jazz Band still entertains somewhere in the San Francisco Bay Area nearly every day. If we can ever help you, please call us at 408-245-9120.
Please visit MagnoliaJazz.com for testimonials, music samples, videos, photos, and our public schedule, and catch us at an event soon. Our next two PUBLIC appearances are June 5 & 6, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, where the trio will be entertaining Saturday at the “Baby Boomer and Senior Lifestyle Expo” and Sunday at the “Benefit Party for Aaron Tanner”. See the details for both events on our website.
Thanks for reading my blog. Please join our Magnolia Jazz Band Facebook “fans”, and you’ll get a reminder for each of our public events. And please take a moment to share this post, subscribe, and send me a comment.