The Quotation Of The Day Mailing List
Quotation of the Day for April 13, 2010
"I remembered an extraordinary musical performance at a tiny AIDS hospice in Thailand, during a tour by violinist Maxim Vengerov in his role as a cultural ambassador for UNICEF. Vengerov took out his Stradivarius violin and played to the audience of fifteen - including visitors - with all the energy and concentration that I had seen him give to a packed Sydney Opera House a few months earlier. He played a fugue by Bach and the music seemed to take on a life of its own. It floated around the bed where a young soldier lay: his AIDS was discovered after a sergeant beat him so badly his intestines fell out. And it rested for a moment on a little boy whose hill-tribesman father was HIV positive, and who would soon be an orphan. It swirled gently around a middle-aged woman with purple blotches on her arms, and an old man, so weak that he couldn't even raise his head.
. . .
"It is the secret of knowing yourself and your materials so well that you can wrap your life's experiences into the very body of an instrument, just as a true musician puts his or her life experiences into the playing of it, as I had seen at the hospice. And when both elements are right, then together - maker and musician - you can persuade your violin to sing and cry and dance the orange."
- Victoria Finlay, from Color, A Natural History of the Palette.
Submitted by: Kathleen Magone
Mar. 5, 2010
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