"You have this very close relationship with this thing that you’re bringing to musical life. It’s just between you and the notes and the musical ideas and a kind of imaginary (in some cases) ensemble of musicians that are making the music. And it’s a world I love to be in, and you need time for that. You need quiet space for that. You need to be kind of in the zone for that, and it’s very difficult to do that when you all lead busy lives." - American composer Joseph Schwantner
The other day, a friend warned me to avoid the new Facebook game, Scramble. Too addictive, he said. If you use the online social networking site Facebook, you know it contains many such delightful ways to avoid work.
The most conspicuous performer at the Olympics probably couldn’t run a mile without stopping. The twenty-six year-old Chinese piano star Lang Lang has been prepping for his part in the Games for three years. He played this morning from Beijing on the Today show. And he’ll pop up tomorrow night during the Games’ opening ceremony.
Click here to hear conductor Eric Townell and myself talk about the Rochester Oratorio Society's recent trip to China. The show, recorded August 1st, was hosted by WXXI's Peter Iglinski. It's about 50 minutes long.
On our last morning in Shanghai, I found myself in the hotel lobby with a dozen or so Rochester singers waiting for the bus to the airport. With our suitcases collected by the glass revolving door, others drifted into the gift shop or hotel Internet center. Three of four Chinese businessmen sat smoking and chatting on their cells. The Chinese smoke pretty much wherever they want. Bored, I wandered over to a baby grand piano draped in a red velvet cover. I pulled the ruffled fabric away and sat down in front of a heavily lacquered, black Yamaha. I touched a few keys. Perfectly in tune.
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