The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows released another beautiful short film that reminds us that our world is drenched in hidden brilliance and beauty.
John Koenig, the creator of the film explains a bit about his inspiration:
"In a famous 2007 experiment, violin virtuoso Joshua Bell tried his hand at busking in a plaza of the D.C. metro, playing anonymously for nearly an hour on his priceless 1713 Stradivarius violin, a talent for which he is often paid $1,000 a minute. In the end, only seven out of a thousand passersby stopped to listen. He collected $32.17. When he finished playing each piece, there was no response from the passing crowd. But, as Washington Post writer Gene Weingarten noted, “Every single time a child walked past, he or she tried to stop and watch. And every single time, a parent scooted the kid away."
It's fun to think of your favorite artists, back when they were just starting out. Playing the sidewalk in total anonymity. It makes you wonder, if they were right there in front of you, would you have noticed? Strange that something so vibrant as art is so nearly invisible. Strange how rarely we stop to savor the details, or hear the music playing in the background that’s far better than it has any right to be. It’s only after someone points it out, that you finally catch the tune. It makes you wonder if there's brilliance all around you, hiding in plain sight, just waiting around to see if you’ll notice. Who knows how many Kafkas and Van Goghs you might be walking past? Maybe the next J.K. Rowling is living just down the street, maybe she doesn’t even suspect it, any more than we do. We assume that if a piece is any good, surely it'll find an audience. But maybe it’s mostly luck. Luck that they’re not already famous. or luck that the right person just happened to look up. One never knows how two people find each other, if they ever meet at all. Imagine how much courage it takes, to show up and keep playing anyway, hoping it’ll resonate with someone passing by, though it won’t happen for everybody. To keep pouring your heart into something, even if it falls on deaf ears. Reaching out in the face of indifference, trying to give people permission to care. Indifference is easy. It takes a lot of courage to fight back against it. So maybe we should stop and count ourselves lucky that there's still someone out there fighting the good fight.
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