Bandstand Hijinks

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by oldenick, May 17, 2008.

  1. oldenick

    oldenick Pianissimo User

    Apr 10, 2007
    As many observers of musicians have noted over time when a trumpet player sets up in the back row of the band a small part of him/her reverts back to middle school. This has annoyed many a conductor while simultanesouly making for some truly fun times. As we develop as players and professionals we begin to realize the music always comes first, but sometimes opportunity for comedy can not be passed up. I'm sure we all have some stories we could tell. Here is one I am in the middle of. I recently got a call for a big band gig, I knew one of the other guys in the section from the army and we were BS ing while we were setting up. So I take out my plunger mute which I have always thought was adequate. He taps me on my shoulder and shows me his. His was much larger than mine and he gave me a look that said hey that looks just like a plunger mute only smaller. So we had a few laughs. I am playing with them again at the end of June. I am determined to find the largest plunger I can, I mean the size of a pizza box fold it into my gig bag and pull it out right in front of him. :lol: You can see why I can't pass this one up. If anyone has any insight as to how to obtain an enormous plunger (without the use of pharmaceuticals ;-)) I would love to know. If anyone has stories they would lilke to share I know I always love a good laugh.

  2. Solar Bell

    Solar Bell Moderator Staff Member

    May 11, 2005
    Metro Detroit
    Tell your buddy about your new axe...

    and on the gig pull out a shiny new hatchet you have in your extra trumpet case.

  3. iainmcl

    iainmcl Pianissimo User

    Nov 4, 2006
    New Zealand
    On the ships, whenever someone either stood up to take a bow or for a solo, we quite often slipped a plunger onto their seat. The inevitable happened whenever they sat down.

    The other trick was to lean forward and gaff-tape the arms the sax section jackets together or closed. Yes, we felt like we were 12 yrs old
  4. Original_Username

    Original_Username Pianissimo User

    Mar 5, 2008
    Beijing, China
    So. We had the musical and its a brass section tradition to do a prank on someone. So, we had someone go buy a play boy magazine (don't ask how he got it) and we put it in the director's score during the intermission. Well, we were about to play the finale, the director opened up the page and lo and behold, there was a flipped open copy of play boy instead of his music. Director went SOOOO red you wouldn't be able to imagine it.
  5. siarr

    siarr Pianissimo User

    May 18, 2007
    Hollywood, FL, USA
    The pit is a particularly good breeding ground for mischief, especially on long runs of shows. Here's part of a piece I wrote for Mars Music (long defunct) back in 2001...

    About the third week of a 12-week run of "Phantom of the Opera," I and the other trumpet player began to take notice of one of the actors, whom we had fortunately gotten to know, coming right to the edge of the stage during the big "Masquerade" scene that opens Act Two. He lifts his glass and toasts the crowd of elaborately costumed revelers. At this point the actor was almost directly above us and looking in our general direction, so, on an impulse, the two of us lifted our soda cans and toasted him back, winning us a barely perceptible grin of acknowledgement.
    This started the wheels turning. For the next performance, we had brought a pair of large beer steins, and toasted him gleefully. When he saw us he quickly diverted his eyes elsewhere. We were starting to make good progress. We now had to come up with a real tour de force for the Saturday evening performance. After some rummaging about backstage, we finally hit paydirt. Near the water cooler were two huge empty plastic water jugs, which we immediately stashed behind our chairs in the pit. At the toast scene we triumphantly and mock-drunkenly brandished the enormous jugs at our actor friend, who somehow managed to keep going without disgracing himself, but shared a good howl with us after the show. He thought we had finished with him, but at a later show, when he sings the line, "here’s a toast," he looked down to see us holding up a sign with a large hand-drawn piece of toast with an arrow pointing to it. Ah, the highbrow humor of the theatre!

    Hey, in this business you have to make your own entertainment!

    Last edited: May 19, 2008
  6. Original_Username

    Original_Username Pianissimo User

    Mar 5, 2008
    Beijing, China
    True. We ended up with two cans of silly string (provided by our director) at the final night of "Once Upon a Mattress." He just handed them to us and said "find something useful for them."

    So, when the actors and actresses came up for their bows, we went crazy with the silly string.
  7. Brian H. Smout

    Brian H. Smout Piano User


    Played in a combo with a vocalist/piano player just to the political right of Attilla the Hun. He would reach behind him and I used to have to hand him a percussion instrument during "Another Star". Substituted a rubber chicken - got fired!

  8. oldenick

    oldenick Pianissimo User

    Apr 10, 2007
    Siarr, That is funny!

    I am currently working on modifying a garbage can lid to use as a plunger mute. There could be a U-Haul involved by the end of this.

    Last edited: May 20, 2008

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