A case in point occurred at the 400th anniversary celebrations for Jamestown, Virginia this past weekend. The Virginia Symphony Orchestra was performing John Philip Sousa'a great march "Stars and Stripes Forever" when the conductor handed the baton to the President, who conducted the remainder of the march. And by the musicians' accounts, he performed admirably. The conductor, JoAnn Falletta said of the President,
"We didn't expect him to know the score so well," Falletta said afterward. "He was not shy about conducting at all. He conducted with a great deal of panache."
The musicians were impressed by how musical Bush was, Falletta said. "He was cueing the brass, he was cueing the percussion, he kept the tempo going," she said.
Sometimes one needs a release from the stresses of the job, and it pleases me that the President was able to indulge in simpler pleasures, at least for a moment. And I would like to applaud the symphony conductor and the musicians for the professional courtesy. As a former professional musician myself, it is not easy to perform under a non-professional guest conductor- especially at a moment's notice. It seems that all involved performed with courtesy and professionalism. A fitting moment for the 400th anniversay of the first permanent English-speaking settlement in what would become the United States of America, which is in my opionion the greatest nation on Earth.
Hat tips to Power Line and Jay Nordlinger's Impromptus.