We must always work, and a self-respecting artist must not fold his hands on the pretext that he is not in the mood. If we wait for the mood, without endeavouring to meet it half-way, we easily become indolent and apathetic. We must be patient, and believe that inspiration will come to those who can master their disinclination. A few days ago I told you I was working every day without any real inspiration. Had I given way to my disinclination, undoubtedly I should have drifted into a long period of idleness. But my patience and faith did not fail me, and to-day I felt that inexplicable glow of inspiration of which I told you; thanks to which I know beforehand that whatever I write to-day will have power to make an impression, and to touch the hearts of those who hear it. I hope you will not think I am indulging in self-laudation, if I tell you that I very seldom suffer from this disinclination to work. I believe the reason for this is that I am naturally patient. I have learnt to master myself, and I am glad I have not followed in the steps of some of my Russian colleagues, who have no self-confidence and are so impatient that at the least difficulty they are ready to throw up the sponge. This is why, in spite of great gifts, they accomplish so little, and that in an amateur way.Tchaikovsky, in a letter to N. F. von Meck, Florence, 17 March (1 March) 1878. M. Tchaikovsky, The Life and Letters of Tchaikovsky, trans. Rosa Newmarch, London, John Lane The Bodley Head, 1916, p. 281, https://www.gutenberg.org/files/45259/45259-h/45259-h.htm (accessed 25 April 2023).
Tchaikovsky’s Work Ethic
“Our happiness in this world depends on the affections we are able to inspire.” – Duchess Prazlin Cited at QuotationsBookAbstraction XVII
Title: Abstraction XVII Composer: Greg Smith Performer: Greg Smith (April 2020) Instrumentation: Piano Product medium: MP3 recording Related products:– Abstraction XVII (PDF score)Rachmaninoff’s concert routine
Reporters described Sergei Rachmaninoff on a concert tour (c. 1940): His punctuality is a legend. If a reporter asks for two minutes of his time, two minutes and no more are given. Consequently he arrives at a concert hall on the dot of 8 and goes on the stage precisely at 8:30. If the concert […]The Brainy Baboon
“There once was a brainy baboon who always breathed down a bassoon for he said, It appears that in billions of years I shall certainly hit on a tune.” -Ezra Pound – American poet, musician and critic Cited at: QuotationsBookTeaching in Kabul
Emma Ayres, a violist and former ABC Classic FM radio presenter, discusses her experience in teaching in Kabul at the Afghanistan National Institute of Music. CP: You teach viola, cello, and violin as well? EA: A little bit of violin and a little bit of double bass, although I’m not a very good double bass […]I Shall Live in the House of the Lord – Psalm 22 (23)
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Plays in the Jacobean period (16th century England) were divided into acts to enable the theatre company to manage the candles. Source: Martin White, University of Bristol. “Shakespeare by Candlelight”, The Times, Cited in The Australian, 30 November 2012.The cycle of masterpieces
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Is Ringo Starr the best drummer in the world? He’s not even the best drummer in the Beatles. Reporter and John Lennon. Source: Jarski, Rosemarie (2005) Great British Witt. London: Ebury Press, p.257.