A few moments come to mind. The time in 10th grade when my skirt got caught in my tights as I walked outside. The time when I wore wood shoes for an awards show and the sound echoed every time I walked across the stage. Maybe when I was in the hospital and couldn't do much of anything for myself. I don't even want to think about what I looked like when I was getting my appendix taken out. *shudder*
I'm gonna go with something that happened recently. Does crying on stage sound embarrassing to you? Here's the story:
I was playing in an orchestra concert a couple weekends ago and we were coming up to one of the Nutcracker movements that I had some pretty major parts in. The whole Nutcracker suite brings me a lot of anxiety because of some bad experiences I've had with it before. (And yeah, now I pretty much am convinced the thing is cursed.) I was ready, though. The night before it had gone well and I just had to get through it one more time...but my clarinet all of a sudden wouldn't play. Like, would. not. play. And, mind you, this is a new (to me) clarinet so I don't know it's patterns and behaviors. I fiddled with it urgently and then 3rd clarinet player took it to look at as I grabbed my other clarinet- the one in a different key. I knew I could transpose the part I needed to play, but by then my hands were shaking and I was about to start crying. The first couple of notes were fine, but then I hit a wrong one and just stopped. I do NOT believe in "if you make a mistake, make it loud." Oh hell no. So I sat out the rest and tried to gather my composure for the Waltz.
By this time, though, I was a lost cause. My kryptonite is probably that I cry about anything and everything. And once I start crying, that's it. So imagine me being on stage, in front of hundreds of people, with my eyes watering. Yeah, Lost Cause. At this point the 3rd clarinet had figured out what was wrong (a faulty spring), but I was just trying to not have my nose run and my eyes give up the fight. (I really regretted my sweater choice and its lack of absorbancy.) I really didn't start crying for real until after the concert was over and mostly it was just the stress of it all and my disappointment with not playing my part. But talk about mortifying.
The 3rd clarinet, my hero, leaned over when it was over and said, "You're never going to want to play the Nutcracker again."
Oh how right she was. And you know what I've realized? 9 out of 10 holiday commercials use the effing Nutcracker as it's music. The piece is haunting me! I keep hearing where my part is and I remember it all over again! Damn you, Tchaikovsky8!