A (Not So) Normal Sunday Afternoon

By: Ethan Partridge | Writer

November 20, 2015

Twelve o’clock at the new San Clemente Outlets, and business is booming. People are filling the several plazas, looking in at the new wonders that await them inside each store. Everything is going well for the opening of the new mall.

But not everything is going to stay calm for long.

About half an hour later, a single saxophone player walks up to the plaza in between Vans and Columbia Sportswear, and starts to play a soft little tune. A street musician is a normal appearance in a large gathering of people, but soon another musician joins him and they start to play together. Before anyone can react, people playing all sorts of instruments are coming out of stores, hallways, bathrooms, and staircases, all playing the same song, and making people all around the outlets turn their heads.

They’re all thinking the same question: “What is going on?”

The performers that day were all part of the Triton Marching Alliance, who coordinated this performance with the head of the San Clemente Outlets. The plan had been to start small and unnoticeable but to eventually be loud enough so that nobody could ignore what was happening.

“When we started playing, people started to glance over and start to pay attention to what was happening. Their faces all kind of said like, ‘What’s going on?’” said Junior Christopher Hangan.

He, along with Senior Meredith Tucker, were the two who started the show for everyone, but felt greatly different about their roles.

“I was probably the most nervous I’ve been in a long time,” Tucker recalled, “but once everyone else joined in, it was a lot easier to keep playing.” Hangan, however, said he was exhilarated, and couldn’t wait to start the show.

At about halfway through the performance, once the whole band had finally joined in from their hiding places around the stores and blending in with shoppers, a crowd had gathered around the band that was completely amazed with the show, and people were drawn from all around the mall to the source of the commotion

Once the first show had finished, the band director Antonio Soto led the band in front of a stage where they played some more songs for those that had come, and announced the performance as an introduction of the mall in San Clemente.

“I don’t remember a lot of people’s faces, mostly because I was trying not to look,” said Tucker, “but from the applause afterwards I could tell that we had done our job.”

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