Sunday, November 3, 2013

Sound a loud 'A'

Arturo Toscanini, the late, famous conductor of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra, received a brief, crumpled letter from a lonely sheepherder in the remote mountain area of Wyoming:

"Mr. Conductor: I have only two possessions-a radio and an old violin.  The batteries in my radio are getting low and will soon die.  My violin is so out of tune I can't use it.  Please help me.  Next Sunday when you begin your concert, sound a lout 'A' so I can tune my 'A' string, then I can tune the other strings.  When my radio batteries are dead, I'll have my violin."

At the beginning of his next nationwide radio concert from Carnegie Hall, Toscanini announced: "For a dear friend and listener back in the mountains of Wyoming the orchestra will now sound an 'A'."  The musicians all joined together in a perfect 'A'.

The lonely sheepherder only needed one note, just a little help to get back in tune; he could go on from there.  He needed someone who cared to assist him with one string; the others would be easy. Then, with all strings in tune-in harmony-the lonely sheepherder would have a source of companionship and joy and could play uplifting strains.

*I was asked to read this today in Relief Society.  With it being my first Sunday in there after two years of being the primary chorister I cried as I read this beautiful passage.  It spoke to me.  I got it.  I knew it was a tender mercy.  

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