I am not male. Perhaps it is my gender, but I do not understand it. I do play trumpet, but mostly play horn because I am the only person in town who will play horn in our community orchestra, but trumpet players are usually found. This time of year we are practicing Handel's Messiah. This last rehearsal I managed to talk a neighbor into coming and playing trumpet. He was perfectly happy playing second. A teenage boy came and attempted to play first. The results were not good. In fact, in sounded awful. The teenage boy could not hit the high notes 90% of the time. I told the guy that a professional would be playing the first part when he came to town. (He works on a cruise ship.) The teenager replied that he couldn't have some professional take his first part away from him. He hasn't played second since 7th grade. If you can't play the first part, why not play second? Besides, once our seasonal professional shows up, there is no need (in fact, it would sound bad) to have both the professional and the teenager playing the first part. It would be better to just play second. Then, after rehearsal, the teenager asked my husband, who was conducting, if he could try out for the solo in "The trumpet shall sound". He can't even play "For unto us a child is given"! He said he'd get his parents to buy him a piccolo trumpet so he could play the solo. We've had high school trumpet players play the solo before even they, being better, still had difficulties playing the solo- even with a piccolo trumpet. I, myself would happily play second if a decent horn player ever happened to show up.
My husband says that next week he will have a talk with teenager. He claims that if a man tells him to play second, then it will be received better than having a woman tell him. What do you think? I'm just aghast at teenage mentality.