In addition to my work with World Wildlife Fund, I am the Executive Director of the Urban Philharmonic Society, a nonprofit orchestra that plays in diverse neighborhoods in the DC area. The organization was started by Maestro Darrold Hunt back in 1970. I actually met Maestro Hunt through the Year of Giving and gave him my $10 on Day 189.
Well he and I were heading up to see the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra perform a unique event focused on the complex Austrian composer Gustav Mahler. It was half orchestral half theatrical. Basically they played some of the highlights of Mahler but also had a small group of actors that tried to reenact an encounter that the composer had Dr. Sigmund Freud.
It was an interesting performance. The orchestra sounded very good, the acting portion was interested but I would have rather had more of the music. Maestra Marin Alsop seemed a little off, but that was explained during a talk back session after the performance where she stated that she had been battling a severe cold all week.
After the show, I ran into Margarita and Jack in the lobby area. “We enjoyed the show very much,” they told me. She said that she was more of a theatre-goer than a symphony-goer, but they thought they would check out this unique hybrid. Jack on the other hand said he leaned more toward music. “I played clarinet as a kid and had a drum set,” he told me.
This performance seemed to have a special significance for Margarita. “My father loved Mahler…and Freud for that matter,” she said.
The couple seemed well-traveled and in fact I think they are currently in Colombia, where Margarita was born. Jack grew up the son of a Foreign Service diplomat and lived in Brazil and Dominican Republic. We got talking about different places we’d been and figured out that we were both in Brazil’s northeast city of Salvador at the exact same time in 2003 for Carnaval! Small world. I had been living in Brazil for just three months and decided to check out the celebration in Salvador. Margarita and Jack were on their honeymoon!
“I think we’ll donate the money,” Margarita said looking for confirmation from Jack. He nodded his head and shrugged his shoulders a little in agreement. I tried to email them and see what exactly happened to it in the end, but I am almost positive they are in Colombia still and may not hear for them for a few days. Stay tuned for an update!