Clubs and blatant propaganda

Hello dearest readers!

I hope this blog post finds you well. The first few weeks of school are always a trying time, and things don’t usually start winding down until about now. That’s why I’m writing this post! Like many of you, I came to the school completely lost and didn’t know what I wanted to do with my 4 years here. I didn’t go to Imagine Day (not by choice, as any of you who have been reading my other posts will know) and I walked through the club booths set up in the SUB like a zombie. When you come to a new school, it’s easy to get lost in range of opportunities available to you and end up getting overwhelmed and deciding not to pursue any of them. That, my friends, is why I have decided to make this handy helpful list for you! It’s a list of opportunities that are just so fantastic that you can’t say no to trying them just once (I know, I’m making them sound like drugs. I promise, they aren’t that bad for you, although they are quite addicting). So read this list, branch out, and try a few of my favourite extracurricular things at UBC!

1. UBC Thunderbirds Quidditch. Yeah, the quidditch team. I finally joined it a few weeks ago, and I’ve been having the time of my life in it. All of the people on the team are really accepting and fantastic, and it’s a great feeling to be surrounded by people who share the same nerdy love for Harry Potter as you do. They also trick you into exercising, but somehow make it FUN. How?? Hint: it involves tackling people, speeding down the field on broomsticks, and throwing dodgeballs at people. The club is still hosting open practices, so if you still want to join quidditch, you have until this Thursday (the 25th)! It’s only a $20 membership fee for the whole year, and it’s a great community to join. The link to their facebook page is here.

2. UBC Slam. Late last year (too late, in my opinion), I was introduced to UBC Slam by my lovely friend Heather, who runs it. UBC Slam is a fantastic club that hosts a poetry slam at Benny’s Bagels every fortnight (always on a Wednesday evening). This slam is open to everyone who wants to participate, and there’s an open mic part and a competitive part. Admission is absolutely free, and the poetry is stunning. I strongly advise every single one of you to go check it out sometime. The link to their facebook page is here.

3. UBC Film Society. I joined the Film Society a few weeks ago, and so far I haven’t done anything with it because I’ve been too lazy busy.When you join, though, you get a $1 discount at the Norm Theatre (so it’s $4 instead of $5, huge discount there) and you also have the ability to volunteer at the theatre! It goes by a sign-up basis, and you can work the concession, the ticket booth, or even the projector! You have the ability to learn the inner workings of a movie theatre, and all for free! Plus the popcorn is pretty good. The link to their facebook page is here.

4. UBC Band and Symphony Orchestra concerts. The music program at UBC is truly phenomenal, and all the students are required to perform in a large ensemble for their whole time at UBC. There are three of these ensembles: UBC Symphony Orchestra, UBC Symphonic Wind Ensemble, and UBC Concert Winds. All three of these ensembles have concerts a few times each year (Concert Winds and Symphonic Winds each have four, while the Symphony Orchestra has a buttload) and they’re absolutely free to attend! Maybe this is just blatant propaganda about how awesome the music program is here, but if you enjoy classical or contemporary band and orchestra music, come out to one of the concerts! The dates are listed here. Plus the concerts are all in the Chan Centre, and it’s not often that you have the opportunity to see a concert in such a wonderful hall for free!

So there you have it! A condensed list of my favourite things at UBC. And even if none of these tickle your fancy, I encourage each and every one of you to branch out and try a new club this year. Who knows, maybe you’ll find a place where you fit in perfectly!

they choose wrong

(PS this is a blatant lie heralded to you by a sassy and slightly terrifying Meryl Streep. Y’all choose whatever you want)

(PPS I have one last piece of advice – OWN YOUR NEW THANG!)

bad curtsy


The troubles of a music student

Hello wonderful people!

I have officially decided that I will attempt to write at least one blog post per week, although I’m almost positive that I won’t have enough to write about, seeing as how my life at the moment is all focused on schoolwork and finding new TV shows to get distracted with (have you seen Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D? It’s awesome, just fyi).

At the moment, I am distracting myself from studying for my listening quiz. Yes, LISTENING quiz. What is that, you ask? Well, it’s a unique form of torture that the composition professors dreamed up so students didn’t have to take real tests, you know, the ones that involve reading things from notes and such. For my listening quiz, I am required to know 19 pieces of music by heart. The professor will then play 10-15 seconds of said music (which can be up to 5 minutes long in reality) and from that small excerpt, I have to identify the name of the piece, full composer name, and the movement title or number. Just to put this in perspective, those 19 pieces make up more than an hour of music. And from that hour, I get to listen to approximately 1.5 minutes. And those 1.5 minutes determine a fairly large chunk of my grade. So how do I study for this? I just listen to the music. Over and over again. So for all of you kids complaining about regular midterms (except those of you taking Gateman’s midterms, I feel bad for you), see what a music student has to go through? No more saying “oh, you’re in music? That’s sooooo cool, what kind of stuff do you do? Do you just play stuff? I mean, what can you do?” THIS IS THE ANSWER, PEOPLE. You learn a lot of music, and sooner or later your brain explodes because you know like thirty pieces of music that you had never heard before coming here and it’s exhausting to remember it all and keep up with your other classes that don’t require you to memorize music.

On the other hand, we do play a lot of stuff. October 11th was our first concert of the year, and it was faaaaabulous! I’m in the Concert Winds, so we played first in the concert and didn’t do too badly, if I do say so myself. Then I sat in the audience and listened to SWE and their pieces were beautiful and heartbreaking and I loved them so much. My new goal is to get into SWE next year because the music is just at a completely different level. It has EMOTIONS – some of the pieces we played at the concert just felt (dare I say it?) BORING. To me at least. Maybe you guys liked it? Who knows, I could have just desensitized myself to it after long hours of rehearsals and practice. Anyways, if you ever want to see an awesome free concert, just head on up to the Chan Centre for any of the orchestra, SWE, or concert winds concerts. Trust me, you’ll love them.

And that is all for now! Time to go back to learning how four of Debussy’s preludes are practically the exact same and figuring out how to differentiate from them. Until later, au revoir!


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