Friday, December 14, 2007
The Winston-Salem symphony put on a performance of Handel’s Messiah last night. It was lovely. I enjoy symphony-type events but typically don’t go out of my way to attend performances. I was drawn to the Messiah partly out of nostalgia—my mother adores the Messiah and plays it basically the whole month of December, attends Messiah sing-alongs, concert performances, etc.
The caliber of performers, the musicians, the beautiful Gothic-style church setting, and the packed house added to the delight. I was particularly entranced watching the conductor. He’s quite handsome—and young, for a conductor. I was thinking about his profession: to be a conductor. What an amazing job and talent it takes: to assemble talented musicians, memorize the pieces, and make the performance flow. I sit in a desk, at a cube all day. My job is mildly satisfying—but there’s just no comparison to someone like him who coaxes music from his players and delivers the classics, re-packaged to his taste, for audiences thirsting to hear beauty.
Sometimes I fantasize about professions I would choose if I could pick any talent to be blessed with. A conductor is high on my list. To be surrounded by such quality, day-in and out; to be tasked with delivering performances that cause people to marvel at the human capacity to create; and to have the ability to move people emotionally—that is a profession. I’m sure the hours required are long and the expectations stressful, but the results—stunning performances, would be well worth the energy.
I think I’m going to make it a point to attend more performances in 2008. The Symphony is one of our clients, so I can get free tickets to performances. I realized after last night that it’s important to implant myself around the arts. I feel more entwined with the community here, and I enjoy being reminded of musical beauty.