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Sunday, February 28, 2010

Inspiration Infusion

It's well after midnight as I write this. I should be tired. Instead, I'm wired.


Because I was blessed to attend a concert tonight and savor the sweet sounds one of the world's greatest violinists, Joshua Bell.

I'm hard pressed to choose adjectives that adequately describe the performance, but I'll do my best. Marvelous, magnificent, masterful. Superb, sensational, sublime.

And inspiring!

Several months ago, when I learned that Mr. Bell would be in concert at my daughter's university, I was elated. I hopped online to order my ticket. Thankfully, there were still a few available. I got a seat in the nosebleed section. Row G ~ for Grateful. Only one row was farther from the stage. Row H ~ for Higher Yet.

I arrived at the Performing Arts Center, sank into my plush seat, and prepared to enjoy myself. And I did!

Mr. Bell's talent is exemplary. He produced some of the sweetest sounds I've ever heard from his famous Stradivarius violin. He and pianist Jeremy Denk performed four sonatas from different composers: Bach, Saint-Saƫns, Schumann, and Ravel. The variety of the pieces showcased Mr. Bell's skill beautifully.

The encore performance brought tears to my eyes. Mr. Bell chose a piece I've heard many times. I have three of his DVDs, and when I heard the first strains, I was transported to another time and place. My story world.

The reason I found the concert so inspiring is that I fell in love with the rich, warm sound of the violin three years ago when I wrote one of my historical inspirational romances, which is currently known as Violets & Violins. My two main characters are violinists, and I listen to violin pieces as I write. While looking for works I wanted to use in my story, I discovered Joshua Bell, and he quickly became my favorite violinist.

Because I was so far from the stage tonight, I was unable to watch Mr. Bell's fingerings. Instead I got the big picture. He feels the music and flows with it in graceful, swaying moves, which are a joy to behold.

Mr. Bell's passion for and love of his music remind me of the connection we writers feel to our stories and the joy creating them brings us. I'm inspired to take Violets & Violins to a new level and infuse it with more emotion and heart so it moves readers as Mr. Bell's music moved me

Mr. Bell generously offered to autograph programs and recordings after the performance and let his fans get a picture with him. He was caught offguard by the woman who volunteered to snap this shot for me, but I was able to capture his warm smile in the picture at the top of the post.

• • • • •

What inspires you as you craft your stories or pursue other creative endeavors?

Do you listen to music while writing? What kind?

Have you been blessed to meet a celebrity who's served as one of your sources of inspiration?


Donna M. Kohlstrom said...

What an exciting evening for you!

I am often moved to tears by different music...especially when bagpipes play Amazing Grace.

I am a huge fan of Phantom of the Opera and the music and story can set my muse writing volumes!

Keli Gwyn said...

Donna, there's nothing like a piper playing Amazing Grace, is there? Phantom is my daughter's favorite movie. The Fashion Queen loves to sing the wonderful numbers Andrew Lloyd Webber created. I can see why that music inspires you. It's awesome.

Laura Frantz said...

Keli, I've been actually awaiting your post here:) And I posted something for you on Facebook last night but forgot to move it to your page. It's JB playing an incredibly romantic piece which you may have heard last night. One of my favorite violin pieces is Vivaldi's 4 Seasons. I do listen to music when I write - lately it's been the soundtrack from Master and Commander as my current hero is a soldier and it's very fitting.
Bless you, bless you, bless you for sharing here! Love the pictures! And can't wait to read V&V:)

Laura Frantz said...

Whoops, I meant "anxiously awaiting"! In my excitement for you I'm forgetting how to type:)

Anne Barton said...

I'm glad you enjoyed the concert and got so much inspiration from it, Keli! Loved the photos!

Keli Gwyn said...

Laura, I've listened to Vivaldi's Four Seasons over 500 times since beginning my book according to iTunes. That doesn't count the number of times I've heard it in my truck. It's my favorite piece of music!

How neat that you have a special piece as inspirational music for your current book.

Keli Gwyn said...

Anne, the concert was great. I'm so happy it took place at my daughter's college and that she and her friends had time to take a study break and join me for lunch while I was in town.

Susan Anne Mason said...

How cool that you got to meet Mr. Bell in person! And get a pic with him. Very nice.

Glad you enjoyed yourself!


Jill Kemerer said...

Sounds like you had an amazing time! And I love the photos. How special! Music is important to me. It gets me out of a bad mood, helps me clean, and generally makes my life better.

T. Anne said...

Keli, (re the comment on my blog) I've hit the 1 million word mark as well and you have most definitely been an encouragement to me, proving us word millionaires can make it after all.

I think I posted regarding this post on your blog post below. Sorry about that!

Billy Coffey said...

What an amazing night for you! I've yet to meet a celebrity who's served as one of my sources of inspiration (well, other than the guy who played Lamont on Sanford & Son), but I'm hoping I'll get the chance one day.

Lisa Jordan said...

Wow, sounds like you had a terrific night and to meet him to boot!!

When I write, I choose music to fit the mood of the scene. Sometimes it's something playful like the Mamma Mia soundtrack, something soulful like Emmy Rossum, or something that grips my character's spirit like Jeremy Camp or Todd Agnew. When my characters were breaking up, I listened to Secondhand Serenade.

Both of my boys are musically-inclined, so I've been blessed with listening to different kinds of music. I'm thankful our local high school has a strong music program to allow the arts in learning along with the essentials like reading and math.

Never met a celebrity that inspired my muse, but I waited on Lee Greenwood when he was the star attraction at our local fair. He came into the restaurant where I worked. Two years ago, I was in the Atlanta airport and passed Morgan Freeman. That's the extent of my celebrity buzz. :-)

Joanne@ Blessed... said...

I began listening to Jim Brickman when I took writing more seriously. But, he is more of a piano man.

I'm going to have to listen to Joshua Bell. Looks like I'm going to have to add another channel to my Pandora.

Thanks Keli!

Anonymous said...

Okay. Don't have time to read everything right now, but looking over the content of your blog, I know I'm going to love you.

I followed you on Google Reader & Twitter. Looking forward to reading more :)