It is possible over time to lose enthusiasm, to stop finding pleasure in an art form. I have wondered about this in recent months. Am I burning out? Or is it just that what's being presented is lacking artistic taste?
During the past ten days I covered two events and in both cases I learned that I'm not burning out. The first event was a Memorial Service for Edgar Vincent. One of the partcipants was Joan Morris. She sang a witty song, "Black Max". It's a marvelous song, but what made this experience so special was the delivery- no costume, no fancy lighting, no excess staging, just one artist singing with total attention to words, detail, the music. The audience was rapt. So simple. So perfect.
The second event was the Martina Arroyo Fundation Gala evening. One of the participants was Paquito D'Rivera, renown jazz artist and composer. Again there were no trimmings, almost no light, no scenery, no excess, one artist playing for the audience, gripping, exciting, brilliant.
Both events brought total joy. And neither cost millions of dollars to produce. The artists knew what they were doing and required no "crutches". What was presented brought smiles and cheers from the audience. There's an important lesson: know what you're doing if you're a performer, and for producers, less is more.