Hobnobbing with Excellence and Greatness

Hobnobbing with Giants of of the 1930’s

Hobnobbing with Giants of of the 1930’s. David Rubinoff is the conductor in this most rare featured 1933 picture. Benny Goodman is the 2nd saxophonist from the right.  It is offered by the Ted Lewis Museum in Circleville.  For the best time of your life, visit this museum. Please support the museum. All donations are tax deductible. They are keeping our wonderful, American, big band tradition alive. My connection: I was Rubinoff’s personal arranger and accompanist for 15 years. We started our association in 1971. I was a senior in the music program at Wayne State University at that time.  Currently, I hold a Master of Music degree from Wayne State.

Now a Drum Roll, Please, for the Hobnobbing

Joseph Rubin is the curator of the big band, Ted Lewis Museum in Circleville. He sponsored me to be part of a special Rubinoff and His Violin commemoration concert. My Rubinoff association association lasted until 1986. That is the year he passed away. The Circleville, Rubinoff event was this last June 2, 2018. I was asked to deliver a half-hour lecture on Rubinoff. Also, I played piano for Rubinoff’s favorite arrangement. We made it together. It highlights a selection of  numbers from The Fiddler on the Roof. Click the link below. Even to this day, as you will hear, the audience still responds with wild enthusiasm. Maestro Steven Greenman masterfully plays the violin.

Hobnobbing with the master hobnobber, Rubinoff and His Violin
Here I am delivering my Rubinoff lecture in Circleville. It will soon be posted on youtube.

Hobnobbing with the Greats in Show Business

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There I am on the lower right side with Rubinoff. He was in his eighties.

For this post I even have a featured story. Rubinoff personally related it to me. It is also documented in his book: Dance of the Russian Peasant. The book was dictated to his last wife, Darlene.  The story involves Rubinoff , Benny Goodman and Ted Lewis. They were part of a benefit concert in San Francisco. This was the early 1930’s. The trio went marching through the hotel lobby on route to the elevator. They were dressed to the nines. Ted Lewis was sporting his famous hat and cane. All the way they were singing “Me and My Shadow.” Dave Rubinoff said: “The guests loved our shananigans. We had lots of fun in those days.”

More will be posted in the near future. Please, feel free to share this post.  Ted Lewis expressed an innermost wish with his famous expression: “ Is everybody happy?  Just below is a link to the Ted Lewis Museum. Also, let the distinguished curator, Joseph Rubin, know about your interest.  Finally, underneath the museum link is another link. It has yet another Rubinoff story, only posted on our own DSOworks website.

Ted Lewis Museum (@TedLewisMuseum) | Twitter

Lecture Magic for Me in Circleville Thanks to Rubinoff – DSO Works

 

 

Preview YouTube video Rubinoff’s Fiddler on the Roof – Violin and Piano

Busy Making Millions

Busy Making Millions During the Great Depression

Busy Making Millions During the Great Depression. That’s what a violinist I worked with was doing. My picture with him is on the lower right corner on the program. The program also has pictures (from upper left to right) of him with Fritz Kreisler, Eddie Cantor, Will Rogers, and Bing Crosby. Dave holds the record for concert attendance. 225,000 at Grant Park in Chicago. That was in the year 1937. Rubinoff proudly asserted: “They turned away another 25,000 at the door.”

Picture of Grant Park in Chicago where Rubinoff played for 225,000 in 1937. You can see how Rubinoff was busy making millions.

He also conducted the orchestra for the Paramount Theater and Paramount Pictures. His stage name was Rubinoff and His Violin. His name is featured above on the movie marquee. Thanks a Million is a 1935 musical film produced and released by 20th Century Fox. It was directed by Roy Del Ruth. It stars Dick PowellAnn Dvorak and Fred Allen.  Musicians featured were Patsy KellyDavid Rubinoff, Paul Whiteman and his band with singer/pianist Ramona. That movie was featured just before a concert I gave. It is mentioned on the picture above. The entire event commemorated his memory.The orchestra was conducted by Maestro Joseph Rubin. Maestro Steven Greenman was the violinist I accompanied. Before the concert I gave a lecture on my association with Dave Rubinoff.

So Why Have So Few Today Heard of  Him if He was Busy Making Millions?

I think the answer is resentment. Also, everyone was jealous. The average musician was struggling to make a living. Especially during the Great Depression. Rubinoff was a perfectionist. He was adamant in his interpretations. He was incredibly precise. This created even more resentment and jealousy. Just listen to the youtube sample below. As a matter a fact, listen to everything available about Rubinoff and learn.  I think the picture below speaks miles. Regardless, I am honored to have my photo with Rubinoff in the Ted Lewis Museum. The museum is an outstanding tourist attraction.

Rubinoff gave America hope during the Great Depression. Americans loved him.

 

Rubinoff and His Violin Concert – June 2, 2018 – YouTube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Hy8M_gDnoQ
Nov 5, 2017 – Uploaded by The Ted Lewis Museum

The Ted Lewis Museum presents Rubinoff and his Violin “Pops” Concert, Saturday, June 2, 2018 at 7 PM at …

commemorative concert to be given in Circleville, Ohio

Commemoration Concert for Rubinoff and His Violin

Commemoration Concert for David Rubinoff and His Violin. Musical history is about to be made. I, David, worked with Rubinoff and His Violin for decades. He passed away in 1986. Dave felt that our arrangement of the Fiddler on the Roof was the best arrangement made in his entire life. It was  a “100-proof” standing ovation elixir.  On Saturday, June 2, a great virtuoso violinist will and I will perform a special dedication to David Rubinoff.  He and I will perform the Rubinoff Fiddler on the Roof. Rubinoff was regular conductor and soloist at the Paramount in New York City. Rudy Vallee saw him.  As a result, he signed a contract with the Cantor show. During his career, Mr. Rubinoff performed at the White House for Presidents Hoover, Roosevelt, Eisenhower and Kennedy. During the Great Depression years, Mr Rubinoff made as much as $500,000.00 annually conducting and playing the violin. The American public needed music that heals. David gave them what they needed.

Image result for pictures of Rubinoff on DSOworks.com
A poor Russian as a youth, little David acquired riches
and fame through his mastery of the  violin.

Here is what is particularly fun for me: Rubinoff and I worked an entire summer season on our own specical arrangement of the Fiddler on the Roof.  Now, over 30 years later it will get a new life! Maestro Greenman once played a another arrangement of the work. He was violin soloist with the Energy Corridor Houston Orchestra (ECHO). This was on Friday October 21st, 2016. Steven collaborated collaborating with his good friend, the conductor/violinist Michael Fahey.  For the ECHO performance he played”Theme from Schindler’s List” and “Fiddler on the Roof”, arranged by John Williams. With great anticipation, I am looking forward to seeing which arrangement the Maestro and our concert audience prefers. Also, I will give a  special presentation about my association with Dave. The distingusihed orchestral conductor will be maestro Joseph Rubin. He is also the curator of the Ted Lewis Museum in Circleville Ohio.

Maestro Rubin will conduct the orchestra at the Rubinoff commemoration concert
A very happy event under the baton of Maestro Joseph Rubin.

The Commemoration Concert

Tickets will be available in March. The internal links below give more information and samples  Rubinoff and His Violin. This once in a lifetime concert should not be missed!   It will be held at  Circleville High School  in the auditorium. See you at our commemoration concert. – David.

Commemoration Concert for 6/2/18.
Violinist Steven Greenman in Krakow, Poland

Steven Greenman was described by the Washington Post as “particularly impressive.”  “Extraordinary” was the term usedby the Pittsburgh Post Gazette. Steven Greenman is a multi-talented musical artist. He is equally adept at performing stunning solo violin works with symphony orchestras. Furthermore, he performs soulful East European Jewish folk music (klezmer music). He is also at home with passionate East European Romani (Gypsy) music.

Forgiving Audience for Rubinoff and His Violin – DSO Works

Riches Come from “Dance of the Russian Peasant”

 

 

World Fair stimulated Claude Debussy to find his niche as a composer

World Fair Shaped the then Seven-year-old Claude Debussy

World Fair Shaped the then Seven-year-old Claude Debussy. Debussy was born on 22 August 1862 in Saint-Germain-en-LayeSeine-et-Oise, on the north-west fringes of Paris.[4 

In 1889 Paris celebrated the centennial of the French Revolution. They held a “universal exhibition” at the center of Paris. The Eiffel Tower was built for that purpose. The exhibition allowed those who came to sample cultures from Africa and the Far East. They included a Moroccan bazaar, a Chinese pavilion, a Buddhist temple, and even a Senegalese village. A street from Cairo was duplicated. Included was a Congolese settlement of ivory carvers. A Vietnamese theatrical troupe performed.  A Tonkinese village featured silk weavers. The 1889 World fair was the gateway to sounds that many composers had never heard before. Rimsky-Korsakov came from Russia. He was also totally taken by these new sounds.

 

World Fair in Paris in 1889 influenced Debussy as a composer.
Claude Debussy in 1908. He was 46 years of age.

The genius of Claude Debussy is vast and with many … – DSO Works

My own recording of Pagodas by Debussy is on the YouTube presentation immediately below.

Video for YouTube David Ohrenstein playing Pagodas by Debussy▶ 5:44

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vZuPRPRJbgo
Feb 2, 2016 – Uploaded by Lesley & Ohrenstein

Concert Pianist David Ohrenstein plays Pagodas from Estampes by ClaudeDebussy. Filmed at the Glenridge …

 World Fair in Paris was a factor in Debussy’s later composition called Pagodas

 Little Debussy most likely decided then to one day include these sounds in his own compositions. Also, the Oriental music was not written down. It was played on the spot. He wanted his own music to sound spontaneous in a similar fashion- even if wrote it down.  Imitating the novel  sound of the gamelan, he later would compose his piano piece, Pagodas. He loved how the music did away with the melodic and  rhythmic clichés of Romanticism.  I would be happy to play some of Debussy’s exotic music  for you at the Crab and Fin Restaurant on St Armand’s Circle in Sarasota. The link below gives the specifics. Yes, I am available for piano lessons in Sarasota.
Enjoy David now playing at the Crab and Fin Restaurant

Enjoy David Ohrenstein Playing Piano

April 9 @ 12:00 am – December 18 @ 5:30 pm

Enjoy David playing the piano at the Crab and Fin Restaurant. Claire de Lune by Claude Debussy is still a favorite piano classic. So is Scott Joplin’s The Entertainer. David plays outdoors (weather permitting) on an authentic Yamaha console piano.  Have lunch, dinner, or simply a beverage.  “I’d say that overall, it’s a great place to have lunch or dinner if your around Saint Armands or Lido Beach.” in 35 reviews.  David is returning to the Crab and…

Find out more

Enjoy David now playing at the Crab and Fin Restaurant

Enjoy David Ohrenstein Playing Piano

Enjoy David playing the piano at the Crab and Fin Restaurant.
  • Clair de Lune - Suite Bergamasque by Claude Debussy
    Claire de Lune by Claude Debussy is still a favorite piano classic. So is Scott Joplin’s The Entertainer.

    Enjoy David’s piano playing outdoors (weather permitting) on an authentic Yamaha console piano.  Have lunch, dinner, or simply a beverage.  “I’d say that overall, it’s a great place to have lunch or dinner if your around Saint Armands or Lido Beach.” in 35 reviews.  David is returning to the Crab and Fin for a 2nd engagement. He played there 2017 from May 31- Dec. 19.  Most recently, David just played from Dec. 20, 2017 to April 1, 2018 at the Gasparilla Inn on the isle of Boca Grande, Fl. This has been his 9th consecutive year at this world famous location. David has also played extensively in New York. This has been for 15 non consecutive summer seasons at Scott’s Oquaga Lake House. Currently, starting April 9, his piano playing has been called upon again  at the Crab and Fin Restaurant : Monday evenings from 6-10 pm; Tuesday afternoon  from 12:30 to 5 :30 p.m. Wednesday also from 12:30 to 5:30 pm. You can enjoy lunch, dinner or simply purchase a beverage and listen to his piano playing in a beautiful outdoor setting.

Enjoy David Starting April 9, 2018

Playing on fine acoustic pianos is coming back in vogue. For finer dining, authentic pianos are making a much overdue return. . For years, everything has gone electronic. As a result, many piano players have lost their acoustic piano touch. If anyone is interested, I am offering piano lessons in Sarasota. My own teacher was Mischa Kottler. He studied piano with Alfred Cortôt in Paris in the 1920’s. Then he went to Vienna and studied with a pupil of Franz Liszt- Emil von Sauer. I love to play Liszt for audiences. Below is the story of how I studied and now perform the Bohemian Rhapsody:

Bohemian Rhapsody -With One Take Played on Piano – DSO Works

Map
First impressions are the longest lasting.

Best Musical Event this Summer, 2018

Best Musical Event for the Summer of 2018 is just around the corner. Tickets are now available. Click on link given below.

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This painting, done for David Rubinoff, is entitled “Professional Jealousy”

Why Rubinoff And His Violin “Pops” Concert will be the best musical event

“Rubinoff and his Violin” a name that brings back fond memories for anyone who remembers the golden age of radio. Before Andre Rieu, violinist and conductor David Rubinoff captured the hearts of millions on the air and record crowds of 225,000 at live concerts.

Rubinoff was discovered by Victor Herbert at the Warsaw’s Royal Conservatory in 1911, who brought the prodigy to the US. In 1931 Rubinoff was signed by NBC to join Eddie Cantor on the Chase and Sanborn radio program, where his orchestra included Benny GoodmanTommy Dorsey and Glenn Miller. Inspired by his friend John Philip Sousa, Rubinoff dedicated his life to promoting a love for music in young people, performing at thousands of schools including two concerts in Circleville in 1959 and 1980. A Columbus resident for 15 years, Rubinoff was guest of honor at the Ted Lewis Museum’s opening in 1977.

Now you can experience Rubinoff’s musical memories live for the first time in 80 years, featuring violin virtuoso Steven Greenman and a 28-piece orchestra conducted by Joseph Rubin. Circleville’s own Sarah Julien will be soprano soloist. I, blogger David Ohrenstein, will accompany Steven Greenman.  Students are admitted for free. Yes, beautiful music coming back.

Hear your favorite songs of the 1930s: Smoke Gets In Your EyesCheek To CheekDancing in the DarkSt. Louis Blues and much more, all in Rubinoff’s original arrangements saved from destruction by “The Ambassador of the American Songbook,” Michael Feinstein.

PRE-SHOW LECTURE AT 6:15 PM

David Ohrenstein, Rubinoff’s accompanist for 15 years, will share Rubinoff’s fascinating history. He learned first hand of his friendships such musical icons as Victor Herbert, John Philip Sousa, Irving Berlin and Enrico Caruso.

SATURDAY, JUNE 2, 2018
AT 7 PM

CIRCLEVILLE HIGH SCHOOL AUDITORIUM
3810 CLARK DRIVE
CIRCLEVILLE, OH 43113

TICKETS $15 ADULTS
FREE STUDENTS & CHILDREN

best musical event
Entertainer David Ohrenstein plays ragtime

Pianist David Ohrenstein to Play at the Gasparilla Inn

Pianist David Ohrenstein to Play for diners and socialites on a newly rebuilt Steinway Grand at the Gasparilla Inn. He is scheduled 6 nights weekly in season at this island resort.

Pianist David Ohrenstein Will Begin his 8th winter season at the Famous Gasparilla Inn on December 20
David to Be Featured on a newly rebuilt 1925 vintage Steinway Grand Piano. Location: Gasparilla Inn on the isle of Boca Grande, Fl. This year marks his 9th consecutive winter season.
The Gasparilla Inn & Club – Photo courtesy of Gasparilla Inn

Enjoy Pianist David Ohrenstein

Live at the Gasparilla Inn!

Posted by DSO Works on Saturday, February 3, 2018

The Gasparilla Inn and Club in Boca Grande is ideal for any special occasion:

Gasparilla Inn Historic District is in the heart of an historic district.  Location is on 500 Palm Avenue in Boca GrandeFloridaUnited States. On March 18, 2008, it was listed in the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.[1]

The National Register designation centers largely on the Gasparilla Inn itself.  It is one of the largest surviving resort hotels in Florida.  Originally it was built for wealthy northerners in the early 20th century.[2]

Here are just a few of the highlights the Inn has to offer:

  • Great food by master chefs
  • Service by a highly trained,  considerate and responsive staff.
  • Incredible decor with featured displays.  View: (1) Spectacular seashells. (2) A pictorial history of the Inn. (3) Pictures of big fish catches and fishing expeditions.
  • Of course, the newly rebuilt vintage Steinway.

David is particularly excited about this year. This is because piano technician, Larry Keckler of Sarasota Florida, reconditioned and fine-tuned the dining room Steinway.   He also tuned a second Steinway grand in the “Living Room”. Both date back to the early 1920’s. Steinway parts were flown directly from Germany. Having played at the Inn over Thanksgiving, I personally witnessed how the guests loved its intimate, clean and clear tone.

When dining, be sure you ask me to play entire piano score to Mozart’s Eine Kleine Nacht Musik (A Little Night Music). I have a rare and most enjoyable German-made arrangement.  Guests also love my rendition of Chopin’s Nocturnes. Gustav Holst even gets into the act. I have a unique transcription of his Jupiter from The Planets. Franz Liszt loved transcriptions. So do I.  Enjoy great music in the old tradition in a special setting. I will be there six nights weekly: From December 20, 2017 through April 1, 2018.

 

Listen to the new music style on my ballroom dancing CD.

New Music Style will be Romantic and Individualistic

New Music Style will be Romantic and Individualistic. Times are changing. Ugly and trite music is out. With the change over, new personalities are appearing. This is true artistically and politically. I begin by referring to David Dubal. His book is Reflections from the Keyboard: The World of the Concert Pianist. I found his interview with pianist/conductor Vladimir Ashkenazy quite illuminating. Dubal has given piano recitals and master classes worldwide. He has also judged international piano competitions (to include the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition).  Dubal has taught at the Juilliard School since 1983.[8] He taught at the Manhattan School of Music from 1994 until 2015.

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Composer/conductor Vladimir Ashkenazy.

So why the New Music Style?

File:Bergh Richard Nordic Summer Evening.jpg
New music style will be romantic and beautiful.

Dubal questions Ashkenazy as to why he pays so little attention to recent music. He answers with a discussion about how today’s music is coming to a dead end. The following story is related. He had appeared on the same program as a certain modern composer. I (blogger David Ohrenstein) quote Ashkenazy’s words as he talked to the composer after the concert-“Did you like the performance of your piece?” He replied, “Yes, it was very well performed, but it is such an ugly piece of music.” I said, “But you are the composer!”. “Yes, I know I’m the composer.  But all I see and hear around me is ugliness, so that’s what I put down on the paper.”

Why Do We Need the New Music Style Immediately?

When times are good, we can tolerate some  ugliness. Certainly, we have. During difficult times we need relief. My arch example involves Hoagy Carmichael. Click on the internal link below. It explains this statement. Mark my prediction: Romance and the Romantic style are returning. It is the wave of the future. We all need relief from ugliness. The ballroom dancing CD is a product on DSOworks.com

One Musical Hoagy Please?

Hoagy Carmichael wrote a in new music style that was triggered by  the Great Depression. His Stardust was the big winner.

 

Tempus fugit so keep yourself young

Tempus Fugit so Learn to Keep Yourself Young

Tempus Fugit so Learn to Keep Yourself Young. Tempus fugit is a Latin phrase, usually translated into English as “time flies“. The expression comes from line 284 of book 3 of Virgil‘s Georgics,[1] where it appears as fugit inreparabile tempus: “it escapes, irretrievable time”. The phrase is used in both its Latin and English forms as a proverb that “time’s a-wasting”. Time seems to move at quick speeds. Tempus fugit also can translate: “Time is like a fugitive.” It’s a favorite to place on plaques that are mounted on grandfather clocks.

Tempus fugit Image result for Wiki Commons picture of a grandfather clock
Time is a fugitive, always fleeing. How do you slow it down?

Tempus Fugit in Our Opera Octavian and Cleopatra

The upper featured picture has David Powers on the right. Joe Fast is on the left. They star in our opera: Octavian and Cleopatra. I, David Ohrenstein, wrote the music. My wife, Sharon Ohrenstein, wrote the book and lyrics.  David Powers plays the ghost of Julius Caesar. Joe Fast is the ghost of Marc Anthony. They try to communicate to Octavian. He must show Cleopatra that he loves her. Otherwise, she might do something drastic! Unfortunately, Octavian’s motto and the words he lives by is “make haste slowly.” This sets the wheels of tragedy in motion. The youtube sample is live from our production at the Palladium Theater. Cleopatra is  played by lyricist and book-writer, wife Sharon. She and the two ladies in waiting sing of their next lifetime. They receive instructions on  how to be high born from Cleopatra.

Lesley and Ohrenstein’s It is time to say Goodbye – YouTube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vcZ8HY2881w
Dec 14, 2007 – Uploaded by Rudder3218

Lesley and Ohrenstein’s “Octavian & Cleopatra” Trio sing It is time to say Goodbye & Like A Phoenix.

So, dramatically speaking we can always be young with reincarnation. However, my  book of poetry, is entitled The Oquaga Spirit Speaks. It offers a partial solution to aging. We can not ride the wave of time to avoid aging. Here is the spirit’s rhyme: “Keeping in motion is youth’s potion.”  It simply paraphrases Isaac Newton’s saying. Bodies in motion tend to stay in motion. Conclusion: move and stay young. Contact us at DSOworks@gmail,com. Finally there’s a new opera you can really enjoy!

Interesting repetition of the bass line.

Interesting Repetition With the Musical Canon by Pachelbel

Interesting Repetition With the Musical Canon by Pachelbel. . Since the 1980s, Pachelbel’s Canon has also been used frequently in weddings and funeral ceremonies  throughout the western world. It uses a continually repeating bass line. Off season in Florida (that means summertime), I extend my services for weddings.

Repetition has different levels of sophistication. In this present day and age, words are frequently repeated over and over. The word choice word  seems to be “baby”. Also, in today’s musical palette, four bars of music are often repeated over and over- like a chant. Simplistic chants are used in advertisements. They can hypnotize you into buying a product.

Interesting Repetition in Pachelbel’s Canon in D

Sarasota Wedding Pianist plays Pachelbel’s Canon – YouTube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5m-IpXovpHk
1 day ago – Uploaded by Dso Works

Pianist David Ohrenstein plays Pachelbel’s Canon. Now available to play for Sarasota weddings. For more …

Pachelbel’s Canon combines the techniques of canon and ground bass. Canon is a polyphonic device in which several voices play the same music, entering in sequence. In Pachelbel’s piece, there are three voices engaged in canon (see Example 1), but there is also a fourth voice, the basso continuo, which plays an independent part.

Interesting repetition as the bass plays the same notes over and over underneath florid violins.
Interesting repetition becomes an art form in Pachelbel’s Canon in “D”

Example 1. The first 9 bars of the Canon in D. The violins play a three-voice canon over the ground bass to provide the harmonic structure. Colors highlight the individual canonic entries. The bass voice keeps repeating the same two-bar line throughout the piece. The common musical term for this is ostinato, or ground bass (see the example below).

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 Why is the Canon in “D” and the canon form so popular with weddings? The canon provided a grounded bass over which the music above changes and flows. A man and wife can change over the years. However, the sacredness of the wedding vows remain constant. They make the part of the grounded bass. The grounded by can be compared to the presence of the Divine.  Now is that beautiful, or what? I play  the Canon as part of my repertoire at the Crab and Fin Restaurant at St Armand’s Circle season outdoors on  Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. If it rains, no show! Check events on DSOworks.com for times.