Saturday, January 26, 2008
month of loves: art
"Procession of the Nobles" by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
I think we played this piece in my high school band and I absolutely loved it. It's so majestic and does an excellent job of creating a mental picture of nobles marching with a heck of a lot of pomp. I decided to write about this piece today after Sam reminded me of a rather ridiculous situation surrounding it.
The summer before Sam and I got married, I was working at Henkel, which owns Duck Brand duct tape. My office building housed the world's largest roll of duct tape and sponsored a Duck Tape Festival each fall. Anyway, during my lunch hour I would go sit in my car in the shade and listen to books on CD, or classical music on the local classical radio station. One week, I heard, during lunch each day, an advertisement for an Oriental rug company that was having a sale. In the background, it had this wonderful music that I knew I knew, but couldn't put my finger on the title.
The first day, I just thought about it and played it over in my head, trying to figure it out. The second day, I called Sam and sang it for him over the phone to see if he knew it, but, alas, he didn't. A few days later, when I heard the ad again, I memorized the phone number on the radio ad and called it.
Some one answered and asked how they could help me. I told them I was sorry, that I didn't have a question about rugs, but had a rather odd question about an ad I heard on WCLV. The man told me to go ahead, and I asked my question. After a few seconds of baffled silence, he said, "Let me get _____. He does all our ads."
A second man came on the phone and I explained my situation again. I heard this song on his advertisement and wanted to know what it was. He told me he was sorry, but he just wrote the ad and e-mailed it to the radio station, and they chose the background music. I thanked the man and apologized again. He said, "You really don't have a question about rugs?" No, I said, I was sorry.
So, that evening, I went home and went to the radio station's website and found some phone number I could call. I called, explained again, and someone gave me the email address of the man who chose the music for the ads. I emailed him with my request and patiently waited.
The next day, after work, I saw a reply to my email and eagerly opened it. Procession of the Nobles, he told me. He'd played it in high school, too. He was glad I liked it and agreed it was a wonderful piece. Joyfully, I went to BYU's classical library, found the piece, and played it nice and loud. My parents had been kept up-to-date on the saga and were equally as joyful that I'd finally found my missing title and could hear more than just the 30 second clip on the Pearl Rug ad. I also called Sam-- this occasion was worth using up minutes before free nights kicked in at 9 PM. He too was empathetically excited.
So there you have it. Why else would I have gone through so much, inconvenienced so many, and made myself sound like a fool so often, than if I truly loved a marvelous piece of music?
*I tried to find a place to hear the whole song online and had no luck. Here's a one minute snippet from Barnes & Noble. Just scroll down till you see the song title. If anyone has a better way of listening to the song, feel free to leave a comment.