Umlauf Sculpture Garden

Posted on April 29, 2005 by Sara Hickman. | 1 Comment

Lily had her play, “The Tears of A Dragon” at school yesterday. Ok, I’ve got to say that I love her school, I love her music teacher, I love the children, I love the cafeteria and the wooden stage with the fifties lights…I love how hard the entire second grade worked on this performance. Based on a story of a little child (played by three girls, including Lily) who befriends a dragon and brings it into the town…Lily looked so poised and calm and sang/spoke her parts so clearly, and to see her moving like a cat across the stage, marching with hand over brow, searching for a dragon… wow. The kids created the backdrop of mountain, trees and sky, so everything was magical. It made me want to be in second grade at this school! What a fantastic place. Children were playing wooden xylophones and simple drums and rainsticks, and their were risers on either side of the stage for the choir, split in two, and the children all moved seamlessly to the next segment of where they should be, without a word of direction!, and would continue singing or acting. They all wore Chinese shirts or skirts or some even had chopsticks in their hair. Lily wore her red silk kimono jacket her father brought her from China, brown hair pulled back in a ponytail. She looked so natural and pretty…
io sat in my lap and we clapped and oohed and aahed…Just fantastic work.

David and I worked so hard on music this week. Yesterday, we wrote out the music for the first section of a three part symphonic piece we are creating for the Austin Symphony (sorry if I get redundant…I don’t read old blog entries) for their 4th of July concert. I am seeing now that this will have to be for 2006 because of the length and dedication of the project. It has become a “living” piece in that it can have internal pieces that shift and move…at least, for the moment that is what is happening.

We have been studying Thomas Paine and the Declaration of Independence, talking about the history of Free Masons and Catholicism. My great-great-great-great-great grandfather was John Quincy Adams, at least that is what has been passed on to me as legacy, so David wanted to go online and pull up info on both John Quincy and his father, John Adams.

After reading and reading and talking and talking, I got ancy and started writing and writing. I wrote out the lyrics for “Declaration/Independence”, which I see as a triangular piece, sort of the preamble, if you will, followed by “Seperation/War” and ending with a pastoral “Rejuvenation/Peace”. So, David and I sketched out the music for “Declaration” yesterday, and we are popping over to Joe McDermott’s studio today to throw it down, add quick represenative harmonies and guitar work.

We also wrote a love song, originating from the fact that John Adams was the first president to reside in the White House (albeit an unfinished one, but he still moved in). Back then, people used to write long letters to their spouses, and so David and I wrote from the kernel of John writing to his wife about living in this unfinished house…oh, the song is just gorgeous. We already walk around absentmindedly humming the melody.

I presented some seperate ideas for “The Face of God” and “The Woman at the Well”…lyrics I had scribbled down and never followed through with, so David sequestered himself to his room last night while I spent a little time with Lance.

It’s great working with David because we are the rabbit and the tortoise, yet we fit together, creatively, so well. He is a brother. I love spending time with him. He’s gentle and funny and so learned! He has a vast knowledge of all kinds of subjects, and it has been a true delight introducing him to everyone all week.
He’s a good egg!

So, last night, iolana, Lily, David and I went to the Umlauf Sculpture Garden Party. (Lance had his last yoga class…I think he is really enjoying it!) The girls and I LOVE this party…I think it is the best of the year.
The Nash Hernandez Orchestra always plays, complete with a dance floor… and what could be better than growing up dancing with your family to a sixteen piece swing orchestra, live, out under a gorgeous, Texas sky with good food, beautiful gardens and art all around? Not to mention the array of hand decorated clay pots up for auction, and all the festive clothes that people wear. We got to chat with people from church, people from school and gymnastics and politics and the art world and even saw Stephen Moser on the way out (he writes the fashion column for the Austin Chronicle…and he is the true essence of delightful!)
This year, we hit the dance floor right out of the gate. It is a tradition that the three girls from the Hickman-Schriner-Waldon household dance and dance because NO ONE ELSE DOES!!! So, it is like having our own personal orchestra, really! The Umlauf staff gets a big kick out of it, I think…they know when they see us coming to have cold water ready.

Now that Lily and io are almost five and nine, they really get at it on the floor. They are so expressive! Strutting, cartwheels, hands high in the sky, even laying down on the floor and making snow angels….And, of course, I’ve taught them the tango and we wheel around together; I can still just lift them both, one at a time, to give them airplane rides. It is a happy, happy experience. We sweat and look a fright. The newspaper cats always come and take pix, and then Lily will say, “I’m gonna be in the paper again…”, almost to the point that it has become passe for her. Gosh!

The food this year was extra incredible. It was io’s first year to actually eat some…and she enjoyed it tremedously. After she danced with a bronze of a woman in the woods….io was all in lime green last night, with little daisie sandals, so she looked like a wood sprite, gaily flitting about, huge smile on her little face.

The girls are the only children that come each year, and I find a lot of pride in having them there. They are respectful and courteous…of course, I’ve never thought to ask if children are allowed, they have always just
been allowed to attend ….they are such a joy to be with…

I’m starting rehearsals for the new album…I have already gone in the studio and done some 2″ transfers into pro-tools, and laid down some basic guitar tracks for two songs. I look forward to getting together with the men folk and hashing out the ideas in my head…man, my head gets so full of ideas I feel like I”m swimming inside myself if I don’t get them out. All these little pieces of paper with random ideas, I keep collecting them together, or try to transfer them to a single notebook, but it is nearly impossible…I just have piles of ideas. At least having the office at home, now I have the piles near me instead of six blocks away.

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One response to “Umlauf Sculpture Garden”

  1. Helen Korsmo says:

    Hello Sara.
    I googled, looking for tiny pencils, and found your site. Could you please tell me where you found them?
    Thank you,

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