Introducing students as the featured entertainment at the annual Daniel Webster Society dinner.
Looking at this photo, I think I have enough swag on my lapels and in my breast pocket, no?
If I survive this semester . . . .
New eyeglasses are better than new clothes.
I hope that man who so precipitously and rudely cut me off on Kingshighway on Thursday (in a red van-ish SUV of some indeterminate sort) is proud of the words he made spew from my mouth.
Electronics are made for obsolescence. I had to replace my 5.1 receiver this week. These things are ‘spensive!
Even in the midst of such busy days at the office, and full days of teaching voice lessons, finding some time to whip up a meal is a sheer delight.
Quiche makes me happy.
I gave a talk this week about my sabbatical, and provided a nibble of babkas at the conclusion. The students seemed happy. So did a few faculty with a sweet tooth.
Acquaintances enrich my life in so many ways. So do students, and the circus kids.
Fall Break and NYC cannot arrive quickly enough.
Teaching the Ernst Toch “Geographical Fugue” to my applied musicianship class may be the death of me, but we are going to lick this thing and have fun along the way! (You should have seen them rapping this week.)
Is anything more fulfilling than teaching voice lessons?
I’m ramping up my expectations for several of my students, who are showing they are ready for more push.
The current president of the United States of America is one dumbass. There. The emperor has no clothes. Someone said it.
I can’t wait to start cooking out of my new Moroccan cookbook!
Some days I miss having a dog.
Another group of students has walked across the stage to emerge as university graduates.
On a wet, cold, miserable day, we made the most of the time and sent almost 100 fine arts graduates into the world.
While I’m pretty certain that those in charge made the wrong decision about staying at the Muny in the rain, hindsight is always clearer than foresight. And I simply do not understand why leadership doesn’t read the crowd and the situation and truncate remarks, get to the main event, and cut the spotlight short except on the graduates.
I’m stealing some photos from Jennifer Hylton-Whited’s Facebook page to add to my own:
Webster University’s annual holiday greeting is posted today, and I’m one proud professor.
The concept for this started to take shape in August. Our friends in Global Marketing and Communications wanted to feature a Department of Music ensemble. I pitched some ideas.
And then I wrote some scratch lyrics for one the ideas, using the tune PASSION CHORALE by Hans Leo Hassler (1564-1612). We know this tune best in the 21st century as “Because all men are brothers” or “O sacred head, now wounded.”
The idea stuck, and we enlisted Nathan Rauscher (BM ’19), a jazz major, to write a score for Jazz Singers. Several iterations later, we had a brilliant approved product.
Then our genius vocal jazz teacher, Debby Lennon, started to work with Jazz Singers. And the visual storyboarding started. And then it was time to record in the studio. Then came video recording. And editing. And final product and approvals.
And today? A fine little greeting card, thanks to Karen Burch and her staff; to President Beth Stroble and others in the group who green-lighted the project; and to Debby and Nathan and all the students along the way who made this project sing.
School year commences
New scholars matriculate
My year thirty-one
Saturday morning. At the office. Loads of stuff yet undone and incomplete.
But I’m happier today, because I now am the owner and glad employer of a coccyx orthopedic pillow. My tailbone is giving me less grief already.
I woke on Friday morning to the iPad NOAA warning about extreme temperatures at Rienosslsgasse 3 in Vienna.
Fortunately, I was home in Saint Louis with moderate weather, but more humidity.
At some point my iPad will figure out that I’m in the USA. I certainly know that I am! Witness:
But as my friend Alice said on Facebook last evening, she has little compassion for the slight frustrations, given what I was able to see and do. And I expect no boo-hoos for the cultural differences and the weariness because of the seeing and doing.
And DO I did.
The research grant proposed outcomes are essentially complete. The draft report is 75% there, with some details and nuance to ponder and finesse. In other words, I accomplished the stated goals. The grant outcome was successful. Now we move to implementation.
Along the way, I was a tourist nearly every day — in fact, save for last Sunday, every single day of the sojourn in Europe.
What did I not do? Well, I skipped the Salzburg and Venice/Dolomites excursions because I just was not feeling well. Summer allergies are, I’m told, quite severe in Vienna this year. I did not make it to all the art museums I would have wished, and since concert season was over, I attended only two musical performances.
What DID I do?
Enough art to keep me happy for months. Less-frequented locales such as the Snow Globe Museum, the Freud Museum, the Schnapps Museum, the Imperial Crypt, and the old Jewish cemetery at Zentral Friedhof. Anglican Church services in Florence and Vienna. Florence. Choral concert by a British choir at the British Embassy Church. A cruise on the Danube. Cooking class. Visited Mahler’s grave. Walked in the steps of Mozart and Beethoven and Schubert and Haydn and so many others. Melk Abbey. Heurigerabend. Organ recital at the Jesuit Church. Churches and parks and the Naschmarkt and gelato and beer and bubbly and schnitzel and . . . well, the whole five-senses experience indeed.
And I kept up with the daily office work. My email inbox is only marginally more crowded now than it was when I left, and no decisions have been punted to next week.
Now home for a few days, and with days off this weekend with few obligations, I can rest and recharge before the onslaught of the run-up to August 20 when contracts begin.
And I can love on Auggie, who apparently did indeed miss me.
Of all the pleasures of travel, returning home is the greatest joy.
Today is my last day in the office for a while. I’ll do some work, go to the library, write some letters, have luncheon with Rob Lehman, teach a conducting lesson and a voice lesson, clean off my desk, and leave by 5 p.m.
The next five weeks are away on school business.