Rachael Ray is on the TV. She’s the guest cook on some network morning show and she’s teaching the studio audience how to make the perfect fried egg. So she cracks a couple eggs into the pan, makes a little endearing small-talk with the audience while the eggs lightly sizzle, grabs her bright green spatulas and flips the eggs over onto a plate. They aren’t burned. The yolk isn’t broke. Somehow, they’re perfect.
The studio audience goes crazy with applause. They have been dazzled! They have been wowed! The camera cuts to their reactions: their smiles are curtained wide open and their minds have been completely blown by this early morning kitchen wizardry. All over the perfect fried egg.
I am not a morning person. I wish I was, but I need a serious amount of coffee before my body has enough energy to hoist my cheeks into something even resembling a smile. Actually, I think I’m a bit envious of morning people. Their optimism is something we love to hate on when the rest of us can barely get one grumpy leg out of bed, but this optimism is also kind of aspirational. It’s something to strive for.
Okay, Sunny-Side Up is not really about eggs. It’s a piece full of energy and anticipation. From the very first measure, we’re up and at ‘em! We’re flying fast after our early morning worm, pecking the ground incessantly in search of our breakfast. The musical caffeine flowing through our melodies makes the notes perk up loudly, sometimes obnoxiously so. They even get a bit twitchy as the piece unfolds. Aside from this morning rush, I think this piece is an homage to morning people. It’s an ode to the cockeyed optimistic and is dedicated to people who always ‘look on the sunny-side’ of life no matter what time it is or how many yolks might break along the way.
Sunny-Side Up premiered on November 9, 2018 in Bountiful, Utah with the Viewmont High School Wind Ensemble and Symphonic Band with special guest performers from Centerville Junior High School and Bountiful Junior High, Dan Chaston, conductor.
Bountiful Jr. High School
Centerville Jr. High School
Hillcrest High School
Mueller Park Jr. High School
San Jacinto High School
Somersworth High School
Tooele High School
Viewmont High School
Willowcreek Middle School
Markowski Creative (ASCAP)
Winds: Piccolo (doubling Flute), Flute 1 & 2, Oboe, Bassoon, B-flat Clarinet 1 -3, B-flat Bass Clarinet, Alto Saxophone 1 & 2, Tenor Saxophone, Baritone Saxophone
Brass: B-flat Trumpet 1 & 2, Horn 1 & 2, Trombone 1 & 2, Euphonium, Tuba
Percussion: P1) Timpani; P2) Glockenspiel, Crash Cymbal; P3) Xylophone; P4) Marimba, Shaker; P5) Temple Blocks, Cabasa, Suspended Trash Cymbal, Suspended Cymbal, Cowbell; P6) Snare Drum, Cowbell; P7) Bass Drum
No known errata.