First Discipline, Then Freedom
by Allan Appel | Jan 28, 2013 12:12 pm
Posted to: Arts & Entertainment, Music, Schools, Westville
He learned to read music in second grade and to do paradiddles in the third. Now when his conductor leaves the podium, 7th-grader Landis Williams turns inward and is free to play a wicked drum solo.
That talent—and the tension between musical discipline and freedom—were on rousing display Friday afternoon as the sixth, seventh, and eighth- graders at Davis Street Arts and Academics Inter-district Magnet School strutted their stuff in a music, dance, poetry, and history-lesson celebration of the life and heritage of Dr. Martin Luther King.
Williams’ drum solo in the “Final Countdown,” a piece by Joey Tempest, elicited cheers. Click on the play arrow to check it out.
Landis met music for the first time in the Hamden church where his dad serves as organist. A depth and transport show on his face, even for a musician so young.
On his solos Landis said he doesn’t look at the audience, or for that matter at the conductor, whose departure from the podium is a signal.
“Landis plays within himself. He goes in deep,” said William Fluker, who conducts the 30-member Davis Street 21st Century Band.
And when that happens, Landis said, “I know I’m free.”
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