University of Regina student's mallet-to-the-face moment goes viral
Video from Dec. 4 concert has been viewed more than 30 million times
The University of Regina Wind Ensemble Fall Concert on Dec. 4 was going off without a hitch until Gustav Holst's First Suite in E Flat.
What happened is the stuff of internet gold.
"At the end of the first movement of the suite, there are three massive bass drum shots that are supposed to be very loud and very prominent," percussionist Brennan Kowalski said.
"The first two went great," Kowalski said. "The third one, I knew even winding up for it, the beater felt a little slippy, but I let it go anyway — and then the bass drum beater flew out of my hand."
Hannah Wildman, another percussionist, was caught in the crossfire.
"All of a sudden, out of the corner of my eye, I see a bass drum mallet," she said.
The mallet plunked her in the forehead. Now a video of the incident has been viewed tens of millions of times on social media.
The two percussionists were shocked by the missile-like mallet.
"That doesn't happen, or it's not supposed to happen," Kowalski said. "I felt terrible."
Wildman ran off the stage to make sure she wasn't bleeding. She said Kowalski came backstage to check on her and kept apologizing before having to go play in the third movement.
After the concert, Wildman asked for the footage and posted the video, because it made her laugh.
"I know this is a stressful time of year for a lot of other students," she said. "Maybe it will lift their spirits a little bit."
Wildman said the general reaction to the video is that people can't stop laughing, even if they feel a bit bad. She said they joked about it going viral. Then it happened
"It's got 30 million views on one page, three [million] on another, it was on the front page of Reddit," she said. "It's kind of surreal."
Wildman said the hit resulted in a bruise and a bump that went away within a week, and there's no resentment between the two friends.
"I just tell him that I'm going to wear a helmet next time I have to stand next to him."