19 November 2009

BalletTalk recently hosted a heated discussion over the current state of 'ownership' over Balanchine's ballets. I decided to look up a few of the sources to pull together a base report. My impression is that most of the ballets are now concentrated in the Balanchine Trust, though it's not clear which ones are currently not.

I suggest reading the thread in its entirety. For ease of navigation, direct links to my report are posted below.

Part I: The Legacy

Part II: Ballets Named in the Will

Part III: Financial Assessments of the Legacy

24 October 2009

Miami City Ballet, 4 October 2009, On Tour in Chicago

Miami City Ballet
Sunday 4 October 2009
Auditorium Theatre, Chicago
Center Orchestra, Row P

Symphony in Three Movements
Nothing quite compares with the shock and joy of seeing a new favorite for the first time.  

That said, the second look was pretty shocking and aweful as well. The dancers in all four pieces were more alert and energetic than the night before. The jumping in Valse Fantaisie and the level of energy in In the Upper Room ceased to look as labored as the night before. Catoya and Sarabia shed their reminders of Things Other Than Swans. This was an on-message performance throughout.

Stravinsky’s Symphony in Three Movements, as the program tells me, was a musical attempt to capture the maestro’s impressions of the Second World War. There are the odd moments of crashing chaos sandwiching the deadly quiet in which one sits in dread over what happens next.

Mr Villella and Ms Mauro at the Fireside Chat talked about the ‘generic’ (or perhaps simply general) images of war choreographed into the piece: that of the Home Front, the helicopter arms, etc. In the last review, I described the choreography using organic images (the sentient hedge, orbiting bodies), but in truth I also had no idea how to organize the anachronistic but highly persistent images of the Great War, courtesy of my fantastical love of Blackadder Goes Fourth.

The pale gleaming women of the Home Front reminded me of particularly sinister and organic barbed wire (its spikes the arms and baroque hands of the Balanchine-trained corp). Tricia Albertson’s jumping contest with Alex Wong became more competitive in the matinee: she challenged him head-on in both ability and athleticism. It wasn’t the lighter one-upmanship of the night before but a grimmer competition whose purpose is unknown.

The rhythmic trot, the precision formations strip the corp members of their respective genders – they are anonymous bodies, trying to trap and engage and out-maneuver each other’s units. This time the imagery of the Rubies women seemed more integrated into the action of the corp, pulsing into focus and then just as quickly disappeared, like reflections from popped foam bubbles. The cognitive dissonance is less when one prepares for it, but it is still disconcerting. Are they brief reminders of civilization amidst the chaos? Or perhaps is it an allusion to the spirit of woman as, or at, war? 

Someone once said that conflicts were in reality short and brutish things, most of the other time in war was spent in boredom, in anticipation and also in dread. As I watched the second movement, I kept thinking about life in the trenches, of bodies sitting still, contorting to climb over obstacles and other bodies. It is a moment of reflection in the stolen calm, in which life resumes in all its oddity. Kronenberg and Guerra in this performance was not as languorous (nor the observer as delirious) as the night before, the newly observed sharpness in their movements better accentuated the contrasts in the choreography.

Once again I short-change the third movement in my inability to call up a unifying image of its proceedings (an excellent excuse to see it yet again). Perhaps the most I can say is that if the first had directed my attention to the personalities of dancers or blocks of dancers, then the third forced me to look at the movements of the dancers in relation to each other. It was as if I were forced to view war from above like one would view a Busby Berkeley musical, where suddenly one could extract purpose and logic and even beauty from its purportedly senseless components.

The tragedy of war lies in its costs, regardless of the identity of the victor. Perhaps it was an accident of the close reading, but the image that I took away from the finale were the men, prone like corpses, staring out into nothing as the women erected trees of graveyard crosses behind them.

Valse Fantaisie 1953

“The three ballerinas, wearing headdresses reminiscent of Glinka's Russia, moved together in a perpetuum mobile, attended by the male dancer.” – From the Balanchine Foundation catalogue entry for the second Valse Fantaisie

I am rather ambivalent about the ‘modern’ costuming that every Balanchine ballet seems to have these days. On the one hand, I think it would have lent grandeur and a more overt sense of story (or at least structure) to the choreography; but on the other, the national costumes would have overwhelmed the choreography with notions of character.

The increased energy level improved the performance of this piece perhaps most of all. The night performance had dancers looking as if they were straining to jump and was very distracting. That had disappeared by the matinee and the dancers looked happy and free as they bounded all over the stage.

There is a clear structure to Valse fantaisie that at once evoked that of the grand pas de deux from Paquita (ensemble, male solo, female solo, female solo, pas de trois, etc) but also transcends it. The waltz rhythm is relentless, an ever-present pulse that sustains the action even as dancers stop, reset, find each other to dance in another configuration.

Perhaps the strongest impression that the piece made (besides the excellent dancing by all, including the late substitution for Jeanette Delgado, Sara Esty) were the number of Les Sylphides references that Mr Balanchine seemed to have snuck in. There were the sequence of one footed hops to pointe from the Mazurka and even the undulation of the arms.  

Valse fantaisie does not resemble Sylphides harmonically but there was the same choreographic integration of the corp and the soloist when the four dancers reunite for the finale. Instead of maintaining the distinction of rank, Mr Balanchine integrates the soloists into the corp (but then again, what kind of corp do four lead dancers make?), allowing them to emerge and melt back seamlessly into a moving tapestry.

As Jack noted, there were indeed some problems in the lighting, as the lighting began to dim even before the dancing was over! It wasn’t the most climactic of endings, but overall, still a lovely performance.  

Black Swan pas de deux

The small glitches in mannerisms had disappeared by the matinee performance. Sarabia, prince that he was, ditched the Theme and Variations quote. Catoya dropped the odd Don Quixote/generic Spanish epaulement that she did at the end of her fouettés. The partnering seemed rougher than Saturday night, though the trick-y moments (which I am still not so fond of) - particularly the ending partner spin in which he takes his hands off - no longer looked as if Catoya was about to fall over while doing the rumba. 

Sarabia is, as I say again, elegant, but really the Black Swan pas de deux doesn’t give him much to do. In addition, I could not keep my eyes off of Catoya, who seemed to have drunk a million cups of seductive evil coffee before the matinee. While the amused detachment still remained, this time she casted her web more widely out to us, fascinating an admittedly primed audience with little more than presence. I particularly appreciated her balances that went on forever. I felt as if I were granted a glimpse into the essence of Odile, that of a potent distillation of intent and technique aimed at Siegfried with the sole purpose of getting him to say YES. It was particularly startling when, during one particularly balance, she suddenly turned her head to look at us, as if commanding us to devote the proper amount of attention and awe to her if we weren’t already, and believe me, we were!

Poor Siegfried didn’t stand a chance, and quite frankly, I didn’t feel sorry for him.  

I’ll leave off In the Upper Room as I have very little to add. I seemed to have lost track of Deanna Seay in the matinee performance. I don’t know how it happened, especially as I quite enjoyed her dancing as a stomper the night before. The smoke did not work as well as the night before, differing highly in quantity in quantity as well as location as the performance went on. The performers in the afternoon also seemed to have more trouble with the scenery – two or three got a bit tangled in the black fabric strips, but these are minor quibbles. Everyone danced their heads off (once again, Jeanette Delgado the stomping demon!) and the energy levels complemented the music (and the still convincing climax) much better. Jack noted that the two stompers at the end seemed to have jumped twice as high as they did the previous night, and they did!

Applause was not as sustained nor as loud as the previous night. There was a lot of it but not as much as the company deserved. For their next performances in a clime near me, I think I should invest in an amplifier, or perhaps an unobnoxious company of claquers to do what the city could not. 

06 October 2009

Miami City Ballet, 3 October 2009, On Tour in Chicago

Miami City Ballet in Chicago, Auditorium Theatre
3 October, 8 PM
Row P, Orchestra

Symphony in Three Movements/Valse Fantaisie (1953)/Black Swan/In the Upper Room

There’s a moment in the Vision scene in Sleeping Beauty when Aurora wafts through the Lilac Fairy’s attendants. They are arrayed in rows, suggesting paths, perhaps mazes. Perhaps it’s a foreshadowing of the thorns to come.

The image came back to me upon viewing Symphony in Three Movements for the first time. The curtain rises on a cascade of hair and legs. I was reminded of a slightly unruly hedge with ponytails and arms and legs enough for spikes. Their bodies, clad in white, gleamed (to borrow a phrase from Ms Farrell’s book) like bleached pebbles.  

There was a strong undertone of Rubies in the choreography. In fact the cognitive dissonance became so great at one point that I was forced to look down (alarming Jack in the process) to remind myself of its provenance. The jazz references grew more acute with references from what seemed to be the Charleston. Here was the ghost of McBride doing arabesques in profile, the corp of girls repeating the prancing jog of the boys in a rhythmic march, even the one brief glimpse of the tall girl, face briefly visible upside down. But always they were refracted images, seen in clusters, either in unison or in rounds, briefly glimpsed resemblances that receded into the mist.  

Particularly notable was Alex Wong in the first movement with his wonderfully soft and full-bodied leaps. Tricia Albertson repeats it after him, casually. Anything you can do, she seemed to say, well never mind about the height, here is a lesson on style!

At the end of the first movement, the corp formed a giant pinwheel as Kronenberg pirouetted her way through the criss-crossing ranks. I was sitting too low to see the pattern, but there was a wonderful sense of changing depth even when viewed it straight on. I especially appreciated the Company's clarity in movement. There was a suggestion of great physicality without it looking difficult or fussy which I loved. 

I had not thought to associate the pas de deux in second movement (echoes of Gailliard in the instrumentation!) with stillness. Space, in the absence of the corp, acts as both ornamentation and the ultimate barrier, the deep blue of the backdrop added depth to the movements even as it limited them to their bodies.

In fact the second movement seemed like a meditation on containment, motions and bodies caught up in orbit around each other. We see the motif repeated in the hands, around the bodies, and even how the dancers moved in relation to each other (was this a binary system or a planet with a satellite?).  

Kronenberg and Guerra were deliberate in their partnering – nothing hurried or affected – serenely allowing the movements to bring out their innate sensuousness. Echoing the first movement, Guerra and Kronenberg alternating with each other as they delineated the circular space around their bodies in lazy breaststroke motions (‘helicopter arms’, as Mr Balanchine called them).  

If Sleeping Beauty’s hedge were alive, I thought it might look something like the third movement, terrifyingly beautiful as it grew and moved in near-sentience. In this case, the woman was the hedge, mesmeric and prickly.

After that, I found myself rather weak in the knees! In fact I was in such a daze that I don’t quite remember what happened in Valse Fantaisie (1953), some twenty minutes later. I can report that Sara Esty replaced Jeanette Delgado and that I thought “Apollo with his three Muses, at a (Russian) social?” but beyond that and an image of Les Sylphides that I will come back to in my post about Sunday, it is a blur of waltz music. 

I located some of that lost composure for the Black Swan pas de deux, danced by Rolando Sarabia and Mary Carmen Catoya. I found myself wondering what a full length Swan Lake from the two of them may look like. Rolando Sarabia has lovely carriage and gorgeous air positions, and his Siegfried knew it. 

There is a stillness about Catoya that had a very lovely effect on her dancing (I lost moments speculating on her Emeralds). Her Odile did not deal in superfluities – she allowed Siegfriend to project his own desire onto her, maintaining an amused remoteness throughout. After all, the boy was ready to fall in love, unnecessary motions would have been overkill. However, she seemed to be a bit off of her legs at the night performance, her balances came off fairly well but her pirouettes did not look secure.

It may have been shock at seeing something non-Balanchine after such a feast, but I thought the warhorse was crammed too full of tricks, and the discomfort kept me from enjoying it as much as previously. The partnering looked off that night as well, and Catoya looked like she was about to fall onto the floor when Sarabia took away his hands during the last partnered pirouettes. I should also add that the Russianness became jarring when Sarabia launched into what seemed to be one of the male solos from Theme and variations with a series of double tours en l’air – pirouette in the middle of the coda.

I’ve only seen In the Upper Room through video, and I must admit that I don’t particularly enjoy it. Video flattens the stage and this is one piece that loses much more than average in a recording. Seeing it live restores some of the excitement and depth to the choreography that had been missing.

However, that being said, it’s still not one of my favorites (or even preferred) upon a live viewing. There are figure skating references, yoga references, all sorts of movement ideas thrown in there for an interesting soup, but appreciating the athleticism of dancers can become a bit tedious when the pacing lags and the choreography does not develop toward any unifying idea. The bombers and the stompers dance, occupy the same space, share each other’s clothes, but the choreography is sealed off against each other. They coexist but they do not interact. It became extremely noticeable in the last section, as the music tried to build toward a heart-pounding (and unsubtle) climax that the choreography was simply unable to match.

That being said, I did enjoy watching dancers enjoying themselves. Most of the dancers looked a bit lethargic in the beginning, but woke up (the transition was rather obvious) as they threw more energy and attitude as time went on, but they still looked a bit too much like ballet dancers. One notable exception from the very beginning was Jeanette Delgado, whom my eyes gravitated back to time and again, though she was replaced (I'm told) after two sections by another stomper due to injury. She had a wonderful way of throwing herself into the choreography. Her body radiated tension, as if trying to contain anarchy within its limits as it fought to get out everywhere.

[A few minor edits due to late at night stupidity and for optimistically thinking I could go it along without my program or my notes. Corrections were primarily for grammar and clarity save for a more major one correcting Ms Kronenberg's name. My apologies, Ms Kronenberg, I shan't do it again!

19 August 2009

from Jack

A recent exchange with Jack regarding an older post on Mazzo, conducted over several emails:

Jack: I said that about Mr. B? Mazzo in "Diamonds" used to puzzle ME; it was anticlimactic, in contrast to the big cast in white, the symphonic Tchaikovsky music, and coming last always. When Farrell came back into it, it was GRAND FINALE and then some! I loved Mazzo in "Duo Concertante" too, she was right for that; no coincidence, it was made on her.

me: I remember pretty well that you had said that Mazzo in Diamonds was confounding to Mr B. Mazzo to me was almost clam-like in her reticence. In that way she lacks the majesty that Farrell commands. She required delicate coaxing to flower and Diamonds is too grand a ballet for it.

26 May 2009

Ballet Chicago Studio Company, 17 May 2009, Captivating Rhythms

Captivating Rhythms
Presented by the Ballet Chicago Studio Company

Sunday 17 Mary 2009, 3 PM matinée
Athenaeum Theater, Chicago
Somewhere in Orchestra Row N

I unfortunately missed the first act presentation of Bach 1041 and Coppelia. However, two-thirds of a performance is still better than none at all, especially when preceded by a traffic jam that lasted for nearly an hour. And so, having established this fact, I'll move onto the second and in strict numerical order, the third.

The excerpt from Ellington Suite (choreography Duell) was unfortunately too short for me to form much of an opinion. The choreography was suitably jazzy for the 'giggling rapids' - Ellington's counterpoint to babbling brooks? - and it showed off the male trio to good effect. The piece began a bit sluggishly, but the dancers seemed to wake up little by little, possibly in preparation for Rubies.  

Alice Gleaning (choreography Ted Seymour) is a world premiere featuring Ballet Chicago student Maeva Esteban. The piece begins with a corp of women dancing in unison to Mozart while a girl (Olivia Schmit) fiddles with her shoe on the floor. The choreography corresponds simply to the melodic line as background dissonance builds, until Maeva is drawn out into another space, in which she, joined later by the corp, is free to play with motifs, repetitions, and variations in a more modern milieu first to the words and music of Ravi Shankar, then to music by Nikolas Lund (and Steve Reich at some point – please feel free to correct me).

This piece showcased Maeva's energy and attack, and she shifted between ballet and modern technique effortlessly. Jack tells me that Maeva had very beautiful ballon in her jumps as well (in Coppelia), and we agreed that she would do equally well in a ballet or a modern company.

The marriage of modern and ballet is always fraught with interpretation – one which I couldn't resist, apparently. Maeva is drawn out of the melodic simplicity of ballet to take off her shoes, to join in this new free performing medium that can have layers and repetitions. Is it a rejection of the simplicity of classical ballet? Is it an opinion on the limitations of ballet? Is it a commentary on modern dance being the rejection of ballet? I'll stop now before it turns into the Spam sketch. Beans are off. 

My primary purpose for this trip was Rubies, which I had never seen live. These performances were set by Sandra Jennings, and several male dancers who have performed elsewhere told me that it was perhaps the most balletic Rubies that they have done.  

Seeing it live puts back the sheer velocity and depth that had been missing from video. While watching, I was often reminded of the mental image I had when listening to Capriccio for the first time, that of cartoon heroes on a merry chase, opening and closing doors while everyone's paths crossed and uncrossed until they were tied into a large ball, arms and legs sticking out randomly.

I commented to Jack that these performances still had the 'new car smell' – it was clear to see that the company loved to dance it and they attacked it with immense energy. You could almost hear the skidmarks as the company and the choreography chased after each other. Marvelous. 

Olivia Schmit was a cool tall girl, staring the audience down in with a measured glare. She reminded me of a huntress, brushing off captivity by her cavaliers because they were incapable of keeping her. I wanted more animation – at times the stare looked blank and it looked very odd against her dancing.

Margaret Severin-Hansen and Gabor Kapin were the guest couple. Severin-Hansen is rather short – and at first I thought their proportions were a bit mismatched – but she danced big, showing off the lines and levels of the pas de deux with panache. Kapin was a sandy haired king of the pack, but I thought his solo needed more attack – he looked more self-satisfied than charming or delighted at his bag of tricks. As he swung her around in a series of several lifts, the tight velocity reminded me of partnered lifts from the lindy hop – she seemed to love it, winding him more tightly with every move. 

At the end of the pas de deux, tho' he had swung her around and danced and flirted, it was clear that Severin-Hansen had the upper hand – he was mesmerized by the illusion she had dropped in his palm. Odile won this round.

After the performance, I grinned foolishly at Jack for a full five minutes and had to restrain myself from asking for several encores. A good first viewing, I'd say. 

21 May 2009

vehemence, paraphrased

(at a lebanese restaurant in Chicago)

jack: Kay Mazzo in Diamonds just didn't look the same. That used to drive Mr Balanchine crazy.

me: He was trying to recreate Farrell. No one can recreate Farrell in Diamonds because no one is Farrell. He's trying to recapture something that isn't possible, tapping on an overbred body line to invoke something that is innate!

I happen to like Mazzo in Duo Concertante a lot, but comparing her to Farrell is like asking someone to race a Mazda MX-5 against a Duesenberg. Like her or not - and I'd venture to say that I grapple often between liking her and throwing things at her - there's nobody who dances quite like Suzanne Farrell.

15 March 2009

Mark Morris Dance Group, 14 March 2009: Romeo and Juliet Lives, News at 11.

Romeo and Juliet, on Motifs of Shakespeare
Choreographed by Mark Morris
Performed by the Mark Morris Dance Group

14 March 2009
Krannert Center - Tryon Festival Theater
Orchestra Center, Row V, Seat 5 (last row, approximately center, on steep incline to stage)

I gave up my initial idea of adding yet more profundity to the subject of gender politics somewhere between the first and second scenes of Act I. What more can I say that others have not stated already? That women were cast Tybalt and Mercutio and added a predictable but curiously heterosexual slant to those characters (and to those interactions with their male peers)? That indeed the sexual politics of the adult world include a heavy element of violence; and of, in Mr Morris's words, women's ability to fight back (only) in context of their positions and roles?

Krannert does not have the best acoustics from the pit - the orchestra must sit very low and the sound (which logically follows location) emanates from a boxed opening before the stage, affecting the quality greatly. There were a few scary moments with the strings at first, but tensions were worked out as musicians dug deeper, both dramatically and chronologically, into the score. Prokofieff's restored score was a revelation. I heard it with some disbelief, not believing that such minor changes could have wrought so much. There is a lushness and delicacy of timbre and tone that was missing previously, and it seems to have become more thematically varied. I no longer felt as if the various leitmotifs directed the brass to relentlessly pound my ears into submission.

The New York Times review disliked the production with more energy than I was capable of last night. I will not repeat Mr Macaulay's exact words on the needless repetitions of steps except to say that I share them, and that I began to cringe halfway through the second scene as the hitch steps and the endless low arabesques detracted my attention from the action with their predictability and their regular devotion to the melody. The choreography is not not musical, but it is wedded to an annoyingly regular melodic sense that positions the steps within the music instead of through the musical phrases.

Morris's Verona is a sensual and interactive world. Dancers form relationships with each other, indulge in games, clumsy plots, and occasionally transparent enmities that are covered over with cartoonish displays of friendship when the Prince (or perhaps the parent) approaches. Tho' brutal in the machinations of men and women (see Lady Capulet's introduction of Juliet to Paris by a shove, also Paris's manhandling of Juliet during the banquet), it is one in which the men and women seem to have apparent sexual lives without relegating it to the realm of MacMillan's courtesans or (even worse, perhaps) yet another psychological drama involving Siegfried's tutor.

Maile Okamura was a superb Juliet. Her restraint made Juliet poignant, deeply unhappy and in search of something more equal and tender than what Paris, merely a rich thug in this production, was capable of. It was clear in her duet with lady Capulet that she was not a fully grown woman. Where as Lady Capulet, all heavy skirts and sombre hair, sank into the steps as if mired in the concerns and power games of that fair city, Juliet in white floated above them, delicately sculpting the air as if to delineate a higher realm in which she still dwells. However, even in her independence there is some level of resignation - the poison holds no perverse fascination for her, she takes it as is her duty.

Romeo, whose name I will recall if only I had my program - where oh where is it, was a peculiarly gentle man, his bearing often reminding me of Dear Ashley Wilkes (for good or ill) off in world parallel to this one. However, as mystically and ecstatically connected as the young people were at first meeting, neither provided sufficient dramatic motivation to the audience for taking action in order to be together; instead, they were pulled and pushed in various directions, subordinate to the Needs of the Plot instead of the Dictates of Emotion.

These dramatic inconsistencies proliferate throughout the production. Mercutio is still a jester, a mad cap prankster whose character is fleshed out during a pantomime sequence with Juliet's nurse, but the dramatic development comes too late, as Romeo is instead convinced to go to the Capulets' party by unknown means. Rosaline was included in this production and explicitly rejected Romeo at the party for sake of emotional closure. However, was this rejection out of duty? Sheer dislike? I could not read it clearly and she faded into the general obscurity in the company of other townsfolk soon after. However, as this scene came at the expense of establishing Mercutio's relationship and importance to Romeo, the poignance of Mercutio's death is undercut by his portrayal as simply the Jester and I could have done without it.

Two other relationships were of special note: that of Friar Laurence, now a much younger and vital man, with Romeo, and that of Nurse and her servant. We see Romeo glancing sharply at Friar Laurence during the establishing scene - the relationship is never explained. Was it a warning from the Friar, a warning to Romeo over his impetuous emotions? Had the Friar identified his likely instrument for reconciling the ancient feud? We are never told. Instead the Friar resumes his wiseman role before briefly transforms into a dancing role in Act III, illustrating a non-point to Juliet for reasons that are dramatically obscure. Second, the Nurse oscillated between moments of intense identification and blankness with Juliet. Was her servant (the man in the green cap she dances with) simply a servant? It seemed like her sympathy toward Juliet could have been motivated by a similarly confounding relationship with man (perhaps that servant) but it is never entirely made clear. Again, her rejection of Juliet is not dramatically consistent in Act IV - there is no inner struggle, the Nurse does so because the plot demands it but there are no hidden feelings nor conflicts. One other outstanding character had no set choreography: he is simply the Prince's flag-bearer. Perhaps even more self-important than the man he serves, he paces about the town with a measure of self-important insouciance that even his master could not (or would not) match.

Macaulay discussed several plot inconsistencies, so I will skip over those (I share most of his objections) and expand yet again on my perception of Morris's logic of setting dance to music. The choreography was most effective for pairs and single dancers - the dance of the townsfolk with their stylistic poses and shuffle steps was repetitive and in many cases made me cringe. What was it meant to do? However, there was also great gentleness in moments, particularly by the women with their soft port de bras, lifting the air with their arms and torsos, but in most others I was distracted by the preponderance of steps. There were steps in isolation, repeated sequences, mirrored sequences, sequences repeated to other characters. In addition, at moments there seemed to have been isolated quotes from the MacMillan choreography. Regardless, all in all it was an overload of choreography in places that really did not need it, almost as if the choreographer did not fully trust the music to carry the moment.

05 March 2009

In a curious juxtaposition, after reading Croce's "Farrell and Farrell-isms", I had the most curious image of Suzanne Farrell's reappearance in the Symphony in C Adagio; she is jammed unceremoniously into her costume before someone gives her a great shove, at which time Ms Farrell begins bourreeing fantastically, floating in the direction of the force applied onto the stage and into the arms of her cavalier.

It is then I realize that it is merely a ballet recreation of the Prince on the Bridge of a Castle Moat from The Sound of Music and grow heartily ashamed of myself.