Monday, December 8, 2008

Mahler's Second Symphony

Today I told the kids the story of Gilbert Kaplan, an economist who fell in love with Mahler's 2nd Symphony. He kept attending performances and learning about it. After a few years he was invited to conduct a private performance of the symphony and did such a good job that he then started to get offers to conduct major orchestras. He is now considered the best conductor of this symphony and its foremost expert. He bought the original score with Mahler's handwritten notes...

My take away for the kids: keep an eye open to the things that might inspire you. Even if they are not part of your "day job", they might become very important for you and a key source of satisfaction. They might even become your "day job". We spoke a bit as well about whether it is important to be very good at those things that we are passionate about. I said that only if being good was necessary to enjoy them. If you cannot enjoy something because you are not good at it, then you might want to look for something else. But if you enjoy it despite not being very talented at it, then that is what counts.

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