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Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Bought and Paid. By John von Daler

                         I remember the amount as huge. I was sixteen years old and about to play my first professional concert. All right, you probably have guessed the truth: it was not really a concert, but a reception. We were to play for an hour while the guests stood and talked and ate and drank. And we were to get paid for it.

                I had - and still have - a strange idea about #money: I don't like taking it without giving back more than its worth. That day I just could not get over that our little trio was sitting on a lawn by the harbor playing Beethoven trios - and that we were getting paid for it! I mean, I would have played those trios on that lawn for free.
                So I played my heart out. I reached notes I never had touched before and my bow flew over the strings with newfound agility. You would never have noticed that we were not familiar with the pieces, even though we were sightreading. We played for that hour and left Beethoven's melodies strewn about the lawn in garlands of luxurious tints and tones.               
                When we got paid I remember thinking, I wonder if they know that I would also have done this for free?

                I still think that about most everything that I do. Let's keep that our secret. If you do not tell anyone, I might play my #violin at your wedding...

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