Wednesday, May 20, 2009

For several weeks in May, Rivers seniors embark on self-directed independent study projects that can involve anything from volunteering at a soup kitchen to, in one case, earning a rocketry certification. Over the next few weeks, we will be periodically checking in with a handful of students to learn more about their experiences. Today, we hear from Kate Voorhes, who is interning at the Boston Symphony Orchestra.

Yesterday, I finished filling 778 directory binders. Those took Carly and I about a whole week. If you think about it, nearly eight hundred binders is a LOT of binders. When I told Sabine that I had run out of directories to fill the binders with, she was shocked. She started looking for extras, thinking they had been misplaced somewhere in the basement. There were none left. We were done! We are a few months ahead of schedule right now, so Sabine is ecstatic. Today, I laminated exactly 800 ID namecard/badges for the Boston and Tanglewood volunteers and sliced a few hundred advertisements for the Pops tables. It's been a lot of work, but it feels so good at the end of the day to see how much I accomplished. Yesterday, I organized a closet, and got to keep a (slightly dented) cookbook I found with recipes by Keith Lockhart and BSO musicians. It was pretty awesome!
Leaving work today, I listened in to a practice session inside Symphony Hall. It was just one violinist, a pianist, and a conductor, but the music radiating from the stage was incredibly powerful. The violinist was attacking the strings of her instrument like they could never break, but the sound was still so beautiful. I need to figure out the location of the button in my office that turns on the loudspeaker connected to the hall so I can hear the BSO's practicing at my leisure.

This is a picture of the hallway next to symphony hall...with all the pictures of the BSO musicians hanging on the right side, and the conductors on the left. It's here where I recognize people I've been seeing in the hallways.

Where I work (in the BSAV) is a floor above the main hall. Right off the stairs connecting my floor to the floor below me is backstage Symphony Hall. (picture below). This is the practice room where all the BSO/Pops musicians warm up before performing on stage. In the wooden cabinets on the right side are the most percussion instruments I have ever seen. They are completely filled with different types and brands of drums and gongs and other miscellaneous instruments. If you look carefully on the left, there is a musician just chilling at a table.

And this is my desk!! I've been working in the mailroom mostly this week, but next week I will be using this more often. My training session for the computer database is tomorrow.

This is Sabine, my manager/boss. She's the nicest person on the face of the planet. Hanging outside her office is a signed photograph of Keith Lockhart.

Lastly, this is where I enter the Symphony every morning-the stage door (through the maroon awning). Notice the Christian Science Center and the Prudential Building right nearby. There are always cars (usually limos) pulling up to the stage door...usually driving the musicians to the Symphony. The security guard at the stage door is super nice, and we're slowly becoming friends.

This week has been a ton of work, but exciting nonetheless!

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