The Really Terrible Orchestra

30 08 2007

Yes, that’s really what they call themselves.

“We knew there was no market for a good amateur orchestra, because a poor professional one would always be better,” Mr. Stevenson said. “But there is a market for the R.T.O. And that our concerts sell out in advance, to audiences who just love to hear us scrape through easy arrangements of Bach or the last 40 bars of the ‘1812’ Overture — the rest is far too difficult — is proof. There’s always thunderous applause, especially if we’ve got lost in something and ground to a halt. Always a standing ovation. And it’s not just because we have our friends and family in the audience. People genuinely thrill to it.”

“Grinding to a halt.” It’s hard to get more descriptive than that. Now what does that remind me of…

But seriously, I admire the members for their pursuit of learning, even if that pursuit proves to be hopeless. Immensely successful and greatly respected in their individual (non-musical) fields, these ladies and gentlemen lay aside their guaranteed successes for the thrill and sheer joy of doing something new. There’s a lesson to be learned in there somewhere…

Read the entire story here.




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