Thursday, November 10, 2011

Thank You Boris

Look at everything as though you were seeing it either for the first or last time.

Betty Smith
Hello Lily
Okay, I'm going to brag. Oh, there are a lot of things I can tell you about myself that I am ashamed of, but today I'm going to brag.

When I was a teenager living in New York City and being a classical music lover I would sometimes buy cheap tickets to the New York Philharmonic concerts. The conductor of the orchestra in those days was Dimitri Mitropoulos (1886 - 1960).

There was a little known, avant garde, American composer named Boris Blacker (1903 - 1975). One of his pieces is entitled Variations for Orchestra on a theme of Paganini. One day the Philharmonic played the American premiere of that piece. I listened. It was the only time I ever heard that piece. Until....

About 25 years later I was working part time for WQXR, a classical music radio station in New York. In the announcers' and engineers' lounge there was a speaker playing whatever was on the air. I walked in one day to work a shift on the station and I recognized the piece that was playing. I said, out loud "That's the Boris Blacker Paganini Variations."
I will never forget the looks on the faces of the guys in the room. It turned out that the piece had just been recorded for the first time and had never before been played on the air at any other radio station. How did I know?

I told them about hearing it in concert with the Philharmonic when I was a kid and that I remembered it. They were stunned.

I don't know quite why it is but if I see a film or hear a piece of music I will recognize it years later even if I just see a scene from the film or hear a snatch of the music.

I wish I was that way with a lot of other things, like people's names, for example.

DB - Vagabond Journeys
Never Give Up

What event over the past year changed your life, a lot or a little?

Autumn is moving along.
Only 5 answers so far.

I eagerly await your answers.


pacifica62 said...

Regarding the quote, people say that when you have children and/or grandchildren that you get to discover the world again through their eyes. Like seeing it all again for the first time.
If you can remember music or a film then those are the most important things. Names can be much harder to remember.

Dannelle said...

Would this be selective memory?!!!
Sometimes I can hardly remember my own name, ha ha.

Big Mark 243 said...

Sometimes I get to show off how smart I used to be... like when I was chatting with the biology student working on his thesis and was able to keep conversation with him. He was glad to have someone come up and ask him about his work and to have enough of an understand to 'get' what he was trying to do...

...or when I bought the 'Mental Floss' magazine from the drug store... the pharmacist was stunned because as he said, 'not a lot of people can lift that magazine!'

There are surprises inside of most of us... only not everyone knows how to let theirs out...

Beth said...

Nothing wrong with a little bragging once in a while. Pride is a good thing; excessive pride, not so much. Especially if you can't back it up!