Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Last month I have had a special guest, a pale red-haired girl from Jerusalem. She is walking slowly and speaking in a whisper. The result of a severe accident. She came to Amsterdam to learn the art of drawing and it was a pleasure to help her. One of our drawing lessons took place at an African Festival at Conservatory. Festival was a big word for this event. We came early to get a good seat, but hardly anybody was there except for some friends of the Senegalese musicians. It took a while but when they finally started the performance was very intense. Heavy percussions were painful to the ears. Also visually a lot was happening: wild dances on fast rhythms with dancers were jumping high in the air. Not an usual subject for an art lesson. As we were with our sketchbooks at front row the Africans noticed us and came to us to shake hands. One of them, a big black guy with sunglasses, hugged the pale red girl.

At Conservatory I met Cecilia, the violinist. She invited me to attend the masterclass of the Greek teacher Leonidas Kavakos at Concertgebouw. A week later I was there in de Kleine Zaal with my sketching stuff. Cecilia worked herself through a highly complicated piece of Alban Berg. The master's comment on Cecilia's playing was just brief: "It is just perfect. There is nothing to say". What a good teacher! Don't say something for the sake of saying. Saying nothing can be helpful as well.