Monthly Archives: September 2015

Reading Dr. Sacks

I’m in the middle of reading Musicophilia, a 2007 book by Dr. Oliver Sacks I downloaded for Kindle after reading his obituary in the New York Times about a month ago. The book is making me aware of some structural brain differences found in professional musicians versus the rest of the population.  Sacks points to […]

Picasso Sculpture at the MOMA (Yes,There are Violins)

In 2011 The Museum of Modern Art in New York curated a minor exhibition of Picasso’s work featuring musical subject matter entitled Picasso Guitars 1912-1914.  At the time, Greta Berman, writing in The Juilliard Journal, discussed Picasso’s famous and ubiquitous musical subject matter, and especially the fact that Picasso was not a particularly musical man.  […]

Marching Band and a Big Kick

We were in Iowa City over the weekend for the 50th birthday celebration of a friend.  Like the rest of the state of Iowa, he’s a huge Iowa Hawkeyes football fan, and for his birthday party we had a big tailgate party at their house followed by a march to the nearby stadium for a […]

Bell – Then and Now

   I’m pretty sure I saw Joshua Bell in Wichita in 1994.  But until a minute ago I was pretty sure 1994 was the 25th anniversary season of the Wichita Symphony Orchestra.  It was not – I just learned that 1994 was the 50th anniversary season of my hometown symphony.  1994 was also the year I […]

“You’ve Got to Kiai!, Ryan”

Last Wednesday I arrived home from work and was chatting with Michael about my violin lesson that morning, and telling him that Teacher is encouraging me to be more expressive in my playing.  It’s not as if I stand there like a robot; I do move with the music to a certain extent, but Teacher […]

Memory:  A Theme and Variations

Suzuki Book Three opens with a Gavotte by Martini – the Suzuki Book doesn’t cite the source work’s title, but the site I found the other day sources it to Martini’s Sonate D’intavolatura per L’organo e il Cembalo Sonata No. 12: V. Gavotta.  The piece is a theme and variations kind of number, and I’ve […]

Back to School?

The New Horizons String Orchestra is an organization that formed at the Eastman School of Music to allow non-professional, non-traditional student musicians the opportunity to participate in orchestras.  It’s a nationwide organization, with instantiations in 90 or so different locales.  Locally, there is one at DePaul University just down the road from me in Lincoln […]

Aspiring to Well-Tempered

Johann Sebastian Bach is a favorite of violinists – of all musicians, I assume.  I wrote a post a while back about Hilary Hahn and her appreciation of the great Baroque composer and organist, and his music’s usefulness, in her view, for both tempering a crowd at a nightclub in Berlin as well as for […]

My First Recital

This morning I received a link to the video embedded below – a recording of the “Never too Late” recital from my fun-filled day-long chamber music festival held in Naperville a few weeks ago.  It was created by folks from Naperville’s robust public access station – they had three cameras in the building – they […]