I didn’t blog yesterday because I got caught up in trying to find some Mendelssohn letters to read online.
I do know that Mendelssohn left behind a ton of correspondence. I was interesting in reading his own words about his compositions and music in general.
I ended up finding a lovely edition of his Letters from Italy and Switzerland online. [link to archive which has several file versions available….. I like the pdf one I downloaded because it preservers the old feel of the original in the scans of the old copy]
I had staff meeting in the morning yesterday at 10. I have asked my boss to review my job description and pay scale. I realize that when they hired me they had little concept of the standards for remunerating professional church musicians. In the meantime I have had to battle ignorance about the idea that what I do is actually a profession. My boss is sympathetic. I told her that even a simple creative discussion about this would probably raise my morale.
Another thing I noticed at staff yesterday is the underlying assumptions that we make as we talk to each other. This would be fine except several times yesterday it was obvious to me that people didn’t quite get other people’s frame of reference and no clarifying ensued. I will mention this to the boss today for her dining and dancing pleasure.
Then I rushed over to hear my friend, Peter Kurdziel, play a mini organ recital. Hope College has the practice of running 20 minute organ recitals daily throughout much of the local Tulip Time Festival.
An admirable practice. It is limited to alumni of Hope college. Over the years I have attended sporadically.
In the last few years it has been one of my opportunities to connect with Peter. Yesterday he did a lovely job on some Vierne, Langlais and Dupre. I especially liked the two Vierne pieces.
Then he graciously bought me lunch at Butch’s. What a guy. We had a lovely chat. I miss talking with him. I have about come to the conclusion that most of the local professional musicians find bullshitting with me uninteresting or at the worst uncomfortable. So it’s nice to connect with a colleague.
My boss was recently surprised by the whole concept that church musicians would have collegiality type discussions. Interesting. I think she considers me a sort of colleague.
Erik Prince was a featured guest at Tulip Time this year. He spoke yesterday. I find this alarmingly disgusting. I heard someone defending him yesterday and could only respond that he was a criminal and should be tried and put in jail.
Links to some local coverage on this:
“Erik Prince Gets Standing Ovation from Tulip Time Crowd” by Peter Daining Holland Sentinel [link]
“Erik Prince Talks Values, Defends Blackwater at Tulip Time Lunch” by Peter Daining Holland Sentinel [link]
“Investigative Reporter Who Wrote Blackwater Book on Erik Prince’s Tulip Time Talk: I Wish He Would Speak More” by Gregg Chandler Grand Rapids Press [link]
I think it’s sort of like having a young Darth Vader come to talk.
Or Ollie North.