Sunday, February 28, 2010

Man's Art - A Common Language With Many Facets

When I was active in performance in my earlier years, I remember playing an all-Bach recital, ranging from original works to Busoni transcriptions. It was, as I recall, an informal affair, with my meeting members of the audience afterward.
When my conversations with a number of these people had ceased, I noticed a middle-aged gentleman with a roll of paper under his arm approaching me. He introduced himself, and I immediately recognized his name, having heard of his reputation as an architect, mostly dealing with church and synagogue building.
He asked if I should like to see what he had rolled under his arm. I became quite curious immediately, and offered moving to the piano in order to unroll what turned out to be a large sheet (I presume that this was the kind of paper architects used in their processes).
He mentioned, while spreading this sheet on the piano, that he did not know how to read music, but thought that I might have interest in what was on this large sheet of paper.
I gazed at what, upon first sight, resembled, from left to right, a kind of silhouette of a city's buildings and skyscrapers, in black pencil - I then looked up at him, rather blankly, I would imagine, and asked him what I should be looking for, to which he replied, with a slight smile, that he did this while listening to the music.
I then looked again, and to my amazement, I saw the outline of the melody of a Sarabande I had played during the recital I had just finished. It was if I were looking at the music I had played, but from an entirely different visual form. It absolutely astonished me, and my astonishment resulted in his saying something like "we all speak the same language, don't we?"
He and I became fast friends; sadly, he passed away in the prime period of his life - I shall not forget this man, let alone this realization he offered me.



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