“Charlie” steals spotlight @ Christmas Concert
Article by: 26584 NCdt (III) Wilson Ho
Dozens of family members, RMC supporters, students, and people from all walks of life filled the seats in the New Gym for a wonderful night of song, music and fun prepared by the RMC Band and Choir. At precisely 7:30pm, the choir started to sing the “Peace Chant” while the MCs introduced the band and choir. The First Year Orientation Program, or better known as FYOP, is a chapter of every RMC Cadet’s life. The band’s first piece walked the audience through a musical interpretation of the entire College experience, from the minute they go through the Arch to the Badging Ceremony.
WO Gagnon makes guest appearance…&” Charlie” Steals Spolight
Still reminiscing about the old times of FYOP, the band invited Chief Petty Officer 1st Class Keith Davidson, to fill the room with a heartfelt rendition of “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year.” Shortly after CPO1 Davidson’s song, WO Gagnon, (photo left) a former longtime bandmaster of RMCC, returned to the stage. Accompanied by the Choir, the band played The Grinch. Children and adults alike laughed and were amazed by the sudden appearance of the Grinch as he crept around the Christmas tree, stealing presents. The Grinch then went up to the stage, where he sung a rendition about himself before sneaking off with the presents that he stole earlier.
“Charlie”, a young daughter (Photo right) of one of our Training Wing’s staff and dressed in custom-made 4s, graced us with her sweet voice as she sang “Opportunity” from the hit movie Annie. It is rumoured that her voice even melted the Grinch’s ice-cold heart! After Charlie’s debut performance, it was time to have a quick 15-minute intermission where the audience took the time to speak and interact with the band.
Shortly after, WO Albino came back on stage and, after challenging the band to play “Sparks” by Kenneth J. Alford, he donned a black silk headband and, like a ninja, slipped right into playing the xylophone solo! Taking everyone by surprise, he played the xylophone not only perfectly, but also backwards and even blindfolded! After a standing ovation, it was time to return to the past with a soulful rendition of “Huron Carol” by Kevin Norbury from OCdt. Jonathan Page.
The playing of “Sleigh Ride” prompted the need for three special guests to come up onto the stage to play alongside the band. Military Personnel Generation’s Commander, Major-General Éric Tremblay, along with RMCC Commandant, Brigadier-General S.G. Friday, and the College Principal, Dr. H.J. (Harry) Kowal were each invited up to the stage to play an instrument. Initially, a wooden clapper was given to Brigadier-General S.G. Friday, but WO Albino had better plans! Instead, a 12ft clapper, affectionately called “Commandant’s Whip”, was used.
Soon after “Sleigh Ride” ended, the Grinch came back! His heart grew three sizes that day as he handed back gifts with his trusty dog, Max. Speaking of dog, the Commandant’s puppy even received a special gift! After all the gifts, a round of holiday sing-a-long was needed. But the RMC band and choir were not finished! Mary Iver then sang a heartfelt rendition of “Joyful Joyful”, followed by Auld Lang Syne.
The Band and Choir, along with WOs Albino and Gagnon and all of our special guests had worked hard to create this production, and so it was time for all to go to sleep. As a final goodbye, the Band and Choir sang “So Long, Farewell” from the Sound of Music, ending the night with a fuzzily-warm feeling in all of our hearts!
MoreFlickr photos by – 27543 OCdt (I) Colin de Grandpré (Click on photos for better viewing)