I certainly had a unique morning! I arrived at the US Airways Center at about 6 AM for a short warm-up and then met with a trumpet ensemble to audition for playing the SSB at a Phoenix Sun’s game. The auditions are being held all day (7 AM to 7 PM) and we ended up being No. 16. The auditions were held inside in the front entry of the Arena. There we’re about 100 purple chairs set up facing a stage, and above the stage was a giant screen TV with a tape that was showing patriotic scenes (Iwo Jima Memorial, various American flags blowing in the wind, a statue of George Washington, an eagle flying in the blue sky, etc.). There was a Phoenix Suns screen set up behind the stage and I’m sure that the News guy that was filming it got some really great shots. The last time we did this audition was three years ago, and it was a little better organized this time. After I filled out the application form we sat down and the 15 applicants in front of us began their auditions. A guy in a wheel chair playing the harmonica started off (pretty good, except one note was off by a half step). As always the variety was classic, “Them rockets…”, 4/4 time, odd mixed meter (2/4, ¾, 4/4, 5/4), forgotten words, too loud, too soft, too much ornamentation, and the singing postman (he started too high, modulated up a step about 5-6 bars in and then fell apart about 3 or 4 times). I’m sure he’ll be on the highlights! Our group rehearsed at about 6:30 AM on the South side of the building and everything fell together very easily (3 new players this time). The guy that organized the group was playing his herald trumpet with a nice USA banner. Since there were seven of us, I filled out the application calling us the Magnificent Seven. We were all in black and could just as easily been called the Brass Ninjas! Anyway, if you’re in Phoenix we’ll probably be on the Channel 12 news tomorrow morning when they show the best and the worst of the days entries. I’ll post another overview (with a picture) if we end up playing for a game this season.