Sharp

Conner could feel how sharp the razor was as it scraped across his face. Shaving was such a hassle, but it was necessary. Especially today.

He finished removing the stubble from his cheeks and chin and splashed water in his face. He took a look at himself in the mirror, just to make sure he hadn’t missed a spot. As Conner looked himself in the eye, he realized just how nervous he was.

It had been a long time coming, this audition. A part of him felt like he was singing for his life. He had already been accepted to the school, now he was trying to get a little extra-curricular. He wasn’t majoring in music. He wasn’t planning a career as a performer. He just loved to sing, so he wanted to be a part of the school’s choir.

Before he even started attending the university, he’d heard stories of how great their music program was. Toward the end of the previous school year, he’d gotten the chance to see the choir perform live. He was blown away by the shear volume of talent represented on the stage that night. He knew he wanted to be a part of it.

At the student activities fair he picked up a flyer. Conner heard the rumor that they didn’t often accept freshmen into the choir, but that wouldn’t stop him from trying out. So he signed up for an audition time and picked an audition song. Now the day was here.

He chose to dress up a little more than he probably needed to, opting for a necktie. Then he jumped on his bike and road across campus to the auditorium. The director of the music department welcomed Conner with a handshake and introduced him to the senior members of the choir. These would be the judges deciding whether or not he was good enough to sing with them. Fair enough, he thought.

Conner spoke briefly with an accompanist who could pretty much play anything. Soon, the piano on the stage began playing “How Great Thou Art.” Conner decided that an old hymn would be safe enough, but would also show off his range. He sang and seemed to be done with the song fairly quickly. It wasn’t that the tempo was faster than he was used to. It just flew by in a blur.

“That was really good, Conner,” said Dr. Mendez, “A little sharp toward the end, but still, very good. We’ll need to discuss some things on our end, but you should expect to hear from me by the end of the day tomorrow.”

“Thank you,” said Conner. He walked off the stage and sighed heavily. The worst of it was over. He could make the choir, he could not make the choir, it didn’t really matter at this point. He tried his best and that’s really all he wanted to do.

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