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Classical 101

Hope from Spring (and Injured Musicians)

We often read of athletes suffering injuries which are potentially career-ending, or at least put them on the disabled list for an extended period of time. The word "rehab" comes up a lot in those articles. Indeed, musicians are no less athletes than swimmers, baseball players, or runners.

Injured musicians and their treatment

Pianist Leon Fleisher suffered focal distonia, which rendered his right hand useless for some 40 years, before a treatment was devised that enabled him to play with both hands again. Of course, the piano literature is filled with works written for those who have suffered various injuries resulting in the loss of the use of one hand. James Levine has physical problems that have, over the years, forced him to stop conducting for long periods of time. (He has resigned his conducting position at the Boston Symphony, though he continues to conduct at the The Metropolitan Opera.)

Giving hope to those suffering

Scottish Chamber Orchestra violinist Rosenna East had her own very interesting way of "rehabbing" her fingering hand after breaking a bone in her left wrist. She wrote a blog post about it entitled, The Hammers in my Handbag. Rosenna East gives hope to musicians who are trying to comeback from an injury. She is also working to give hope to those trying to comeback from other setbacks in life, taking music into Edinburgh prison. If you took a close look at musicians in Central Ohio, you would find many similar examples of artists giving back to their communities. Spring brings with it new life, new hope, and vivid demonstrations that life can spring forth from seemingly lifeless (or injured) things. During this season of reflection and renewal, I wish you hope. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jYfAncKfru0