Ten minute Musical Bliss

Traditional Employment Includes Types of People and Places

Traditional Employment includes types of people and places.  Any new year is a time for reflection: What happened or didn’t happen last year? What might happen this year? Since this new year  (2019) is about to begin, I thought I’d reflect on previous jobs. I seem to have a predilection for working with: (1) Successful older people. (2) Spectacular older places.   By traditional I refer to: (1) Great places built over 100 years ago. Or, (2) Successful men who, at the time,  were old enough to be my grandfather or possibly great-grandfather at the time of employment.

Traditional Employment by Rubinoff and His Violin

I learned the musical craft of arranging and accompanying from Rubinoff. He conducted the Paramount Theater in New York and Paramount Pictures in Hollywood. What a perfectionist!  After working for 8 hours during the day, at night he’d change his mind. The next day we did a different 16 bars.  Dave’s Stradivarius violin was purchased for $100,000.00 in 1929.  He made about $500,000.00 annually in the 1930′ by conducting and performing. It seemed like the “His Violin” was his marriage contract with music.

Traditional employment
A young Rubinoff in this picture. I worked with him when he was in his 70’s and 80’s. I was hardly 20 at first.   On the poster you’ll find my name.

Traditional Employment at Scott’s Oquaga Lake House

For better than 15 summer seasons I played piano for shows at Scott’s Oquaga Lake House in Deposit, New York. The resort was born in 1869. What a wonderful time our family had.  Our children literally grew up in the Catskills at Scott’s.   Playing many shows as well as our own  (with wife, Sharon) were part of my duties. Most recently, the cast of The Marvelous Mrs. Maiselle got to experience the same resort.

Rachel Brosnahan, winner of the award for best actress in a comedy series for "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel", speaks in the press room at the 23rd annual Critics' Choice Awards at the Barker Hangar on Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018, in Santa Monica, Calif.
Half of this year’s series (2019) were filmed on beautiful Oquaga Lake.

To the right, Rachel Brosnahan, winner of the award for best actress in a comedy series for “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”, speaks in the press room at the 23rd annual Critics’ Choice Awards at the Barker Hangar on Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018, in Santa Monica, Calif. (Jordan Strauss | Invision/AP)

What fun on those unforgettable summer nights of dancing, singing and shows! Its natural beauty is haunting.

Scott’s Oquaga Lake House, Inc

 Is Traditional Employment Also in our Future?

My wife and I wrote a new opera comique entitled Patra. It certainly is quite traditional. Our models were Bizet’s Carmen and Bernstein’s West Side Story. We will have a full production workshop in New York at Schroon Lake scheduled for September 2019. This will be with the Seagle Music Colony. The Colony is under the artistic direction of Darren Woods and The American Center for New Works Development. Schroon Lake has quite a cultural history. Here is an internal link to this Schroon Lake’s glorious past. It inspired me to write a poem. Share if you wish.

 

Amphitheatre in the Woods at Schroon Lake Park – DSO Works

Traditional employment
Patra’s premiere will also be by Schroon Lake. This picture was from Shakespeare in the Woods at the North end.

Conclusion

What’s the best way to acquire rewarding and long term employment?

  1. Work hard at mastery of your talent or craft.
  2. Then, work with a well establish person, group of people or company.
  3. Happy New Year!

 

amphitheatre is located on this lake

Amphitheatre in the Woods at Schroon Lake Park

Amphitheatre in the Woods at Schroon Lake Park. Schroon (/ˈskrn/ SKROON)[3] is a town in the Adirondack Park, in Essex CountyNew York, United States. The population was 1,654 at the 2010 census.[4] The largest community in town is the hamlet of Schroon Lake, located at the north end of the lake of the same name. The Town of Schroon is in the southern part of Essex County. It is north of Albany. The Town of Schroon contains two lakes: nine-mile (14 km) long Schroon Lake. The second is the five-mile (8 km) long Paradox Lake. The two lakes are connected by the Schroon River. W

Schroon and Horicon, is a year-round tourist destination. It has boating, swimming and fishing in the summer. In the winter people enjoy snowmobiling, snowshoeing and ice fishing.  Hiking and hunting are popular in the fall and spring. Each September, hundreds of runners compete in the Adirondack Marathon.  The Marathon finishes in downtown Schroon Lake. The roads around the lake constitute an almost perfect 26 mile distance.

I wrote the featured poem below while walking around the amphitheatre.  Perhaps the poem can inspire others to work toward returning this incredible venue to its former life?

Amphitheatre is at the North end of the Lake

Image result for map of Schroon Lake

Amphitheatre in the Woods
by David Ohrenstein

Amphitheatre in the woods
Remnants of long ago.
Concrete seats set by layers
All facing a roofed, staged show.

Image result for pictures of the amphitheater on Schroon lake in New York
Summer time meant theatrical fun and dancing at the amphitheatre on Schroon Lake. Here we have Shakespeare in the Woods.

Now covered by pine cones and needles,
Encased by sand and dust.
Set in Schroon Lake Park:
A memento to the past, I trust.

The fun of another era
Is still tangible in the air:
Dancing the night away.
Amnesia to worry or care.

At times it imbibed the big band beat
With music under starry sky.
Cool breezes carried the tunes,
Accompanied by a buzzing fly.

A puzzle is soon put together
Of a past day and age.
The pieces form a picture
Of the ballroom dancing craze.

Will its glory ever return?
Can the cobwebs be cleared away?
Will quality entertainment now past
Return for another stay?

Speak of American entertainment: You can now hear my own rendition of a favorite American folk song: Aura Lea A.K.A. Love Me Tender.  It is on the internal link below. My daughter videoed an excerpt of me at the famed Gasparilla Inn on the isle of Boca Grande. It was last season. This coming year will be my 10th.

Pianist David Ohrenstein to Play at the Gasparilla Inn

July images on Oquaga Lake

July Images as Communicated by the Oquaga Spirit

July Images as Communicated by the Oquaga Spirit. First, what and what is the Oquaga Spirit? The word “Spirit” (from the Latin spiritus meaning “breath”) appears in the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament).  It is also in the New Testament. The alternative term, “Holy Ghost”, comes from Old English, spiritus.[8]

On Oquaga Lake, and on other lakes in upstate New York, the spirit seems to have an independent existence. I was just at Schroon Lake and felt its presence there. It feel it is a female spirit from the Lennie Lenape tribe. This branch of the American Indians once made their home in the area. If the spirit favors you, she is most kind. If not, there’s trouble.

Peaceful training as per the Oquaga Spirit

Oquaga Spirit Speaks Archives – DSO Works

I will share the first poem she gave me. Hearing the poetry actually recited is the most authentic way to enjoy the poems. Of course I have memorized every poem. I practice them daily for meditation. As I recite, I let the spirit use me as her medium. It becomes a zen experience. July Images, vocalized, takes on a life of its own. First, read and afterwards recite the lines from Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s the Day is Done: Recitation by memory greatly animates the lines.

Then read from the treasured volume
      The poem of thy choice,
And lend to the rhyme of the poet
      The beauty of thy voice.
And the night shall be filled with music,
      And the cares, that infest the day,
Shall fold their tents, like the Arabs,
      And as silently steal away.

July Images as per the Oquaga Spirit

Here is the picture of July painted by the spirit. Every couplet is rhymed.  It was one of the 1st poems in my book. The Oquaga Spirit Speaks.  In the poems that followed, the 2nd and 4th lines of the quatrain carried the rhyme.

July Images
“June, July and August- It’s a giant stay and play. Boating, skiing, swimming: Just fun no summer dismay.

The summer green of July.
The whizzing by of a fly.
The purple blooms of clover.
The hiking gypsy rover.

July is in floral bloom
And overhead birds swoon.
A scented summer breeze
Wafts through the boughs of trees.

Moths flutter by
Passing the colorful butterfly.
The bumble bee’s in flight,
Giving children a fright.

Lilacs grace the road
As past them hops the toad.
Birds chirp all around
Eating wild berries that abound.

The lazy days of July
Make for rest, not try.
The Sun stays overhead.
The vacationer stays in bed.

July is summer’s crown
As long lit days abound.
The queen of siesta is she.
Cares, like kites, fly free.

Oquaga Spirit Speaks

$7.99

Dedicated to my wife, Sharon, and three children – Abe, Kathryn, and Daniel, who enjoyed wonderful summers at Scott’s Oquaga Lake House with me. Oquaga Lake is located up the mountain from Deposit, NY in the foothills of the Catskill Mountains just across the border to Pennsylvania. This spring-fed lake is rated the cleanest in New York and at points is over 150 feet deep. The lake’s diameter is about a mile across and its outline resembles a bear thus, the Native American name it acquired in 1903 is Oquaga.