”But wait,” you might be saying. “Pomp and Circumstance No. 1?” Indeed. Elgar wrote six Pomp and Circumstance Marches. You can read about the first time No. 1 was used in an American graduation ceremony here.
March No. 1 is called “Land of Hope and Glory.”
I actually gave a speech at my high school graduation. I found it years later, and it was waaay too long. Here’s what I would say now:
- Graduation day is a new beginning. So is every day.
- Get out there and try new things. They may not work out, and that’s ok. See point 1.
- Sometimes when you flip a coin to make a decision, you find out what you don’t want. But then you know. Coin flips need not be binding.
- Don’t wait until you’re 100% ready or the product/situation is 100% perfect or you’ll never accomplish anything.
- Learning doesn’t stop when you no longer have teachers and classrooms. Go find stuff out!
- Try to make things better—the world, your neighborhood, yourself.
Two years ago, I started this blog. I wasn’t ready. I had never done anything like it before. I made mistakes. I still make mistakes. But I know way more about music now than I ever did. It’s been fun sharing what I’ve learned with people—people in 134 countries! So, start catapulting, my friends!
And what better way to end than with another piece of graduation music, the Academic Festival Overture, in which Brahms cleverly incorporates the tunes of a number of student drinking songs. You can see it here. Prost!