"The real trick to life is not to be in the know, but to be in the mystery."
-Fred Alan Wolf

25 December 2009

The Genius of Handel

"... his father, a surgeon-barber and valet de chambre to the Duke of Saxe-Weissenfels, 63 years old at Handel's birth, was dead set that his son would not grow up to be a musician; a career in civil law was the only way to go. Paternal strictures against the boy's having anything to do with music only enhanced his desire. The enterprising youngster secretly had a small clavichord brought to an attic room, and there he practiced while everyone else in the house was sleeping. Then one day, after the seven-year-old had finagled a visit to the duke's court with his father, the duke heard him playing the organ and proclaimed his genius, which must not be wasted. The duke persuaded the father to let Handel have music lessons, gave the boy more money than he had ever seen, and told him that if he worked hard he would enjoy every encouragement."

Read the rest here.

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