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What To Do When The Lights Go Out

by Trey Harris, Dynamic North

I learn most of my life lessons from my children. Last week, my high school senior auditioned for All-State band. Holding true to pandemic precautions, the audition process was different this year. Each musician submitted an audio recording to the judges, instead of competing in-person. There was a five-day window to submit three recordings. You can only imagine the pressure as the days started ticking away.

On the last day, my son still lacked one recording. He shut himself in a soundproof practice room at school and vowed to remain there until he recorded his best performance. More than an hour later, he still wasn’t satisfied with his final etude. So he decided to give it one more try before heading home.

Just as he started into the piece, it happened. An energy efficient lighting system suddenly shut off all the lights in the tiny practice room. Pitch black. No light whatsoever.

What to do when the lights go out?

My son said, “I just closed my eyes and kept playing. I knew the music, so I didn’t have to read it. I just focused on my interpretation. And you know what? I laid down my best recording by far!”

So, my question to you is, what will you do when the lights go out? . . . on your role . . . on your career . . . on your health.

Just keep playing.

You know the music.

Focus on your interpretation.

And see what happens.

Photo by Reuben Kim on Unsplash


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