pluck the duck


I recommend clicking on this and listening as you read today’s blog.

Choir rehearsal last night was challenging in a way I expected. People are not showing up. It’s typical for this time of year. It’s frustrating that many of the absent people are doing music related things in the community: playing in a local orchestra, attending lectures regarding an upcoming performance of Brahms’s Requiem.

These sort of absences have more impact in a small group. But I try to make it a good experience for the people who show up. I have two new anthems scheduled for the last few weeks of the season. One is Moses Hogan’s arrangement of “I Know the Lord’s Laid His Hands on Me.” The other is a modern Anglican sounding piece, “O Love! O Life,” by Stephen Casurella, words by John Greenleaf Whittier. I spent most of last night’s rehearsal on the latter.

Chatted with my boss, Jen Adams, on the phone yesterday. Last week she suggested that we schedule a phone call this week to touch base. She sounds chipper and healing. That’s nice.

I continue to emphasize piano technique in my daily practice. I think I was surprised that my scales were not as fresh as they used to be. I also discovered that for the first time I can easily do Hanon the way it’s designed, that is: moving directly from one exercise to another without stopping by using my tablet and having it scroll. This is satisfying.

I still haven’t heard back from the April 30th Memorial service cellist, but it hasn’t been too long. In the meantime, I have added some of the pieces he mentioned to my practice sessions. It’s just lucky that he asked for the Brahms that my cellist and I have been practicing.

Well that’s enough for an exhausted Thursday morning. See you on the funway!

A Close Look at Brussels Offers a More Nuanced View of Radicalization – The New York Times

So if your parents are from Morocco and you live in Brussels, you have adapted. You have learned the language. You are connecting to society. You are also more likely to be a person who feels the local bigotry (you can understand their insults) hence all the terrorists in the recent horrible attack in Brussels were part of the Moroccan community. Not like the people descended from Turkey living in Brussels. They haven’t learned French and remain insular. Less dissatisfaction. Weird.

Pope Francis: Technology + greed = disaster | National Catholic Reporter

McChesney and Nichols refer to this 2015 article about the Pope’s ideas about technology published last year in their new book.

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