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Jan 07

Something to think about….

Washington, DC Metro Station on a cold January morning in 2007. The man with a violin played six Bach pieces for about 45 minutes. During that time approximately. 2 thousand people went through the station, most of them on their way to work. After 3 minutes a middle aged man noticed there was a musician playing. He slowed his pace and stopped for a few seconds and then hurried to meet his schedule.

4 minutes later:

The violinist received his first dollar: a woman threw the money in the hat and, without stopping, continued to walk.

6 minutes:

A young man leaned against the wall to listen to him, then looked at his watch and started to walk again.

10 minutes:

A 3-year old boy stopped but his mother tugged him along hurriedly. The kid stopped to look at the violinist again, but the mother pushed hard and the child continued to walk, turning his head all the time. This action was repeated by several other children. Every parent, without exception, forced their children to move on quickly.

45 minutes:

The musician played continuously.  Only 6 people stopped and listened for a short while. About 20 gave money but continued to walk at their normal pace.  The man collected a total of $32.

1 hour:

He finished playing and silence took over. No one noticed. No one applauded, nor was there any recognition.

No one knew this, but the violinist was Joshua Bell, one of the greatest musicians in the world. He played one of the most intricate pieces ever written, with a violin worth $3.5 million dollars. Two days before Joshua Bell sold out a theater in Boston where the seats averaged $100.

This is a true story. Joshua Bell playing incognito in the metro station was organized by the Washington Post as part of a social experiment about perception, taste and people’s priorities.

The questions raised:

*In a common place environment at an inappropriate hour, do we perceive beauty?

*Do we stop to appreciate it?

*Do we recognize talent in an unexpected context?

One possible conclusion reached from this experiment could be this:

If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world, playing some of the finest music ever written, with one of the most beautiful instruments ever made.

How many other things are we missing?

Source: http://bitsofwisdom.org/2009/10/21/interesting/perception/

written by Pinewood Design \\ tags: , , , ,

May 17

 

Norway has emerged as the winner of the Eurovision Song Contest, held in the Russian capital, Moscow.

Singer and violinist Alexander Rybak, 23, smashed the record for the most points awarded during the competition.

Iceland came second in the vote, followed by Azerbaijan which took the third place.

The UK’s Jade Ewen, singing an Andrew Lloyd Webber song, ended in fifth position – a marked improvement on last year’s finish at the foot of the table.

For the first time, voting in the final was split between televoting and panels of musical experts, which was supposed to reduce the incidence of predictable and neighbourly votes.

A total of 42 countries voted on the 25 songs, with Norway scoring a record 387 points.

Alexander Rybak, who was born in the former Soviet Union, is a well-known musician in Norway.

A classically-trained violinist and pianist, he wrote his country’s winning entry, Fairytale.

The previous biggest points haul was scored by Finland’s Lordi with Hard Rock Hallelujah in Greece in 2006.

No country suffered the indignity of receiving “nul points” this year but Finland finished in last place.

Denmark’s entry – Brinck singing Believe Again – was written by Boyzone’s Ronan Keating and was performed in the Irish singer’s style.

Germany’s act featured US cabaret artist Dita von Teese, who used to be married to rock star Marilyn Manson.

Her costume was slightly more demure than her outfit at the dress rehearsal after she was reportedly told to cover up by the European Broadcasting Union, which runs Eurovision, because it was unsuitable for a family audience.

Graham Norton was making his debut as commentator for the BBC, replacing Sir Terry Wogan, who bowed out last year.

‘Greatest talents’

Speaking in the Russian capital, Norton revealed that he had spoken to his predecessor, who commentated on every Eurovision final from 1980.

“Terry rang me to wish me good luck,” said the TV presenter. “He advised me to resist having a drink until the fifth song,” he added.

Jade Ewen was chosen to represent the UK through a TV talent contest, with the winning song written by Andrew Lloyd Webber and lyricist Diane Warren.

Her fifth place was a highlight for the UK, which has had a dismal record in recent years, with 2008’s entry, Andy Abraham, finishing last with 14 points.

It was the second time in five years the UK had finished at the bottom, with Jemini’s 2003 effort famously scoring “nul points”.


Germany’s Alex Swings Oscar Sings! act was joined by burlesque dancer Dita Von Teese, who was ordered to cover up for the family audience.

The UK’s entry Jade Ewen was accompanied by Andrew Lloyd Webber, who wrote the song. She ended a dismal spell for the UK by finishing fifth.

 

written by Pinewood Design \\ tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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