Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 9:01 am
How do you measure the value of an experience — one that promises the thrill of new discoveries; the chance to experience, at least vicariously, foreign cultures, new ideas, unexpected emotions — and, at least for a moment, escape? What's that worth?
Probably more than words can express — whatever experience those questions might conjure for you. For me, they're prompted by the loss of an experience — of going to a record store.
Melody Records, on Connecticut Avenue in Washington, D.C., closed on March 9,2012, after 35 years in business.
This week, music is bringing Americans and Russians together in a way that policy discussions never can. And don't call that a cliche in front of the music director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
If U.S. relations with Russia have hit a sticky patch over Syria and other issues lately, that didn't stop the Chicago Symphony from thrilling a Russian audience this past Wednesday night, just as it did on its last visit — to the then-Soviet Union in 1990.
"I've thought to myself often listening to some classical works: 'I think I want to make a couple million dollars and turn that into a pop song,'" Joshua Bell (right) says, laughing. "There's a lot of untapped potential there."
Together, violinist Joshua Bell and pianist Jeremy Denk make for one of the most dynamic duos in the classical music world. The two have been recording and performing together in the classical repertoire for almost a decade, and have become equally at home thumbing through the pages of the Great American Songbook.