First, I organized a classical concert June 29 at Common Street Arts. This has come about through the ripening of a number of factors. 1) My involvement with CSA. 2) My casual discussions with my daughter's cello teacher. 3) My law partners' willingness to sponsor the event. 4) My increased familiarity with various online event calendars. 5) My ongoing discussions with Atlantic Music Festival and Daponte Quartet. And there's a whole lot more subtle discussions, conversations, and research, but suffice to say all these simmering ingredients have finally cooked themselves up into a real manifestation of musical goodness. It was a wonderful evening at the gallery, with great music, but more than a little residual stress for me. I learned a lot during this first concert experience and have ideas to make it smoother and less laborious next time.
I feel like I've realized and am at peace with the concept that, at my age, I'm never going to be the musician or be the artist. But it seems my lot in life, and where I can really be useful, given my skill-set as a lawyer and problem solver - but one who happens to have had a 4-year art education and has a BFA and a self-taught love of music and theater - is to be a patron of, advocate for, and organizer of musical events. Essentially, a friend of the arts.
To that end, my service on the Board of Directors for Common Street Arts has been very personally rewarding, and I feel I'm in for the long haul, with no real eye on any horizon for not being involved. There's so many exciting opportunities for enhancing this community and it's downtown and economy through CSA that I can't imagine not being a participant. I find it comes naturally to launch into a prolonged and passionate advocacy speech on behalf of CSA - genuine and spontaneous - reflecting to me and presumably others my sincerity (or insanity?).
Atlantic Music Festival is the other organization I have great enthusiasm about helping to become a bigger factor in Waterville. I have been helping out on a small basis with providing local information to the artistic director about venues, fill-in musician contacts, junior high and high school music directors, housing possibilities, and other "local knowledge" kinds of issues that have been difficult for AMF to sort out due to their remote headquarters in New York City. Their presence here each summer strikes me as a gift and an incredible fluke, and I would hate to see them choose to locate elsewhere because they felt unwelcome and unappreciated in Waterville.
If I can weave together the strands of CSA, AMF, downtown revitalization, and my historical pursuits, I'll really be at the nexus of all the things I want to be.