Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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One Man Band Orchestra

Several one-man bands, each representing a different instrumental section, working together to form a full orchestra with less than 6 people.
  [vote for,

"Raymond! You're late to the performance again!"

"I'm sorry, I stopped along the way to—"

"Ssshh! The show's starting."

"Odd. You told me that we were going to see the orchestra... but all I see is five people standing on the stage. What is this trickery?"

"Well, this isn't any traditional orchestra. It's rather special, in fact. Are you familiar with one-man bands?"

"Yes. They're those street performers who play several instruments at once. I recall seeing a man with a bass drum strapped to his back, a kazoo in his nose, and tambourines on his shoes just last week."

"That's what these men do for a living. But instead of playing solo, they work together—a sort of one-man band... band. Look, they're strapping on their equipment!"

"Fascinating. That strapping fellow off to the left seems to be blowing into two airbags under his armpits. Ah! The bags go into the two trumpets that he's holding. And he has a tube hanging around his neck that goes into the two trombone slides that are strapped to his knees. But what's that tube he's sticking down into his rear— My God! it goes to a tuba!"

"Yes, he's the brass section. He fuels up on beans before every show, for the low notes. And that man on the right—"

"He must be the woodwinds. Oh, how charming! A piccolo in each nostril, a saxophone in his right hand, and a bassoon strapped to his back, with the mouthpiece bending around his neck. And I wonder how he plays that flute, clarinet and oboe combination in his left hand."

"Now see that rotund gentleman in the back, Raymond. He's the percussion! Poor man, he can never sit down during the show. Those mallets on his backside would be quite uncomfortable. Look how he uses them to play the timpanis behind him. Of course, he also has a high-hat over his head that he plays with a quick foot motion, and a crash cymbal as well. He uses the stick on his chin to play the xylophone and glockenspiel on his chest. And his other foot is used on that marimba."

"You forgot to mention the bass drum, snare, tom-toms and gong."

"All played with his free hand during interludes. Don't forget the woman next to him. She's the string section. Isn't it amazing how she uses that extra-long bow to play that row of violins? She has a viola on her back, hidden from view—but who cares about that, anyway — and the cellos are off to her right. If you look closely, you'll see that her stool is actually a double bass, bowed and played with her feet."

"And how resplendent the conductor is, with his many batons attached to his fingers, elbows, and knees. Is that really necessary?"

"...No, it isn't. It's more of a stylistic choice, really."

"Wait! Who's that reedy chap stooping in the corner over there?"

"Oh, him? He's the French hornist. They couldn't find a place for him."

DrWorm, Apr 12 2010

French horn / Slide trumpet / Balloon http://www.bayliner...ry/album107/1976_31
Circa 1976 [csea, Apr 13 2010]


       //each representing a different instrumental section// Are you purposely making this difficult?   

       It's hard to simultaneously play three different wind instruments, or three different strings, and easier to have one person play violin, flute, and glockenspiel, while another did viola, clarinet, and tympani, and a third did cello, trombone and bass drum, and so on.
mouseposture, Apr 12 2010

       'tis easier to organize tthe orchestra this way.
DrWorm, Apr 13 2010

       From which I conclude that you are of the managerial caste, rather than one of the people who actually do stuff.
mouseposture, Apr 13 2010

       You conclude wrong, good sir. I do indeed do things. One thing I don't do is play the tuba, glockenspiel and cello at the same time. In that case, I would much rather manage from backstage.
DrWorm, Apr 13 2010

       Reminded me of a halfbaked brass instrument on which I performed in my youth [link.]
csea, Apr 13 2010

       Did the balloon itself play any role in the function of the instrument?
DrWorm, Apr 13 2010

       //Did the balloon itself play any role in the function of the instrument?//   

       Yes, a certain valve combination would allow for inflation, and another for deflation through a reed, which added to the general cacaphony.   

       I called it the "Horns of a dilemma."
csea, Apr 13 2010

       That is the coolest thing I've seen all year! Was it custom?
DrWorm, Apr 13 2010

       Thank you, [DrWorm]. It was one-of-a-kind, for which most of the audience was quite appreciative.
csea, Apr 13 2010

       + very cute and well written!! they can all share this croissant...+
xandram, Apr 13 2010


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