Wednesday, August 22, 2007

I Love New York

I'm in New York City this week with Ted Guggenheim. Once again we've scheduled a number of meetings with people in the entertainment industry - artist management firms, attorneys, software developers, etc. It has been cool, sometimes wet and mostly gray during the two days we've been here so far, but as always seems to be the case for me the pulse of this place, the rhythm of the streets and the buzz of the traffic and the people, raises my heart rate and buoys my spirits. I like it here. There was a time I actively planned to buy a place somewhere in Manhattan and see what a life lived in the heart of the city might be like. It never happened. Instead, I've popped in from time to time - usually staying at the Algonquin, but recently using the Guggenheim family's condo as home-base instead. And what's not to like, it's in the same block as Carnegie Hall! I walk a few feet down the street, and see posters for Mitsuko Uchida, one of my favorite pianists.

And the next time she plays Carnegie Hall? Mon February 25th 2008, performing Bartok's Piano Concerto No. 3, with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Pierre Boulez conducting. An excerpt from Andante's site on Boulez:

Pierre Boulez is one of the most important musical and intellectual figures of the twentieth century. As a composer, he wrote a new chapter in the history of music in the fifties, particularly with Le Marteau sans Maître. As a conductor, he gave contemporary music its rightful status and renovated many masterpieces of symphony and opera (Wagner, Bruckner, Mahler, Debussy, Stravinsky, Bartok and others). He taught musical analysis, composition and conducting. He was for several years a professor at the Collège de France (Paris) and is a highly valued lecturer. As a researcher, he organized IRCAM, l'Institut de Recherche et de Coordination Acoustique/Musique (the Institute for Acoustical/Musical Research and Coordination). He is also the author of many books and essays.

Ah, but that's New York. There are people like this on every street corner. I probably jostled a literary genius or two on my way through the crowded aisles of the marvelous Carnegie Deli during lunch, and as I glance out the window of the coffee shop, I see office workers mingling with Tony award winning composers and actors. That's what density - um, I mean population density - will do for you.

In any event, I love this place. Maybe one of these days I will bite the bullet and buy a place here. For now, though, I'm just happy to visit as often as I can, and I'm grateful that this business - iggli - has NYC as one of its gravitational centers. That's a wonderful thing!

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