Skip to comments.Discordant Note (2007 Kennedy Center Honoree Pianist/Conductor Bashes Bush)
Posted on 02/09/2008 5:57:52 AM PST by MaestroLC
This is the most graceless stunt Ive seen a while. Leon Fleisher, the conductor and pianist, received a Kennedy Center honor. As part of the weekend of festivities associated with this prestigious award, Fleisher was invited to attend a White House reception along with the four other honorees (Brian Wilson, Steve Martin, Diana Ross, and Martin Scorcese). This caused the conductor to wrestle with his conscience.
In the past seven years, Bush administration policies have amounted to a systematic shredding of our nation's Constitution the illegal war it initiated and perpetuates; the torturing of prisoners; the espousing of "values" that include a careful defense of the "rights" of embryos but show a profligate disregard for the lives of flesh-and-blood human beings; and the flagrant dismantling of environmental protections. These, among many other depressing policies, have left us weak and shamed at home and in the world.
For several weeks before the honors, I wrestled with this dilemma, deciding in the end that I would not attend the reception at the White House. That decision was met with deep, if understandable, disapproval by the powers that be. I was informed that I was hardly the first honoree to express such reserve; cited to me, among others, were Arthur Miller and Isaac Stern during the Reagan years and several during the present administration. I was asked to attend all of the scheduled events and to follow the well-established protocol of silence.
Silence? How about basic good manners? Listen Maestro, if your feelings were so strong you could have declined the honor. Instead you basked in the event (I was pleased to be part of an event that raises money for the Kennedy Center and to be with my family and to see their joy at the ceremony) and now you shoot over your shoulder at the president who feted you.
Obviously, Fleisher, like every American is fully within his rights to express his views on anything in the world. But to do it in this way, at this moment, is quite a shameful performance. Booooo.
Hmmm, I actually saw him perform last summer.
Graceless, classless AND narcissistic.
Obviously his mama didn’t teach him manners.
Leon Fleisher can eat sh!t and die!
Classical Music PING
Well, bless his heart.
poor baby - apparently his vanity overrules his principles.
perhaps he needs to read, learn and ascribe to the Constitution of the United States.
Frankly, Fleisher will never be counted among the greats as a pianist or conductor. He’s a “second tier” musician.
It only takes a moment to make a complete ass out of yourself.
Members of the left have a habit of shaming themselves in public by denouncing those they dislike. Eartha Kitt did so to Lady Bird Johnson at a White House reception, for example.
However, back then, the punishment by the public was far more severe than when Natalie Maines of the Dixie Chicks insulted President Bush.
Compare that to the dignity and grace of Tiger Woods, who very politely declined either golfing with or attending a photo op with Bill Clinton. He adamantly refused to say anything negative about Clinton, though repeatedly asked to, but was also firm that he would not make any public appearance with him, even though he was repeatedly asked and even begged by Clinton staffers at the behest of Clinton himself.
I wasn't aware that the USA INITIATED the war. Weren't we attacked?
It is fascinating to contemplate how American jewry is contemplating cultural suicide. Israel (which serves as a good platform for an inherant anti-Semtism) is already under attack in academe. Should the political right ever join the political left it will entail a return to the nineteen thirties, and American Jews will soon learn what it is like to be a Jew in today’s France, or Netherlands, or the U.K.
Don’t you love it when award winners use their podium to spout the same old empty rhetoric?
Such a brave Maestro, speaking truth to power. He will suffer greatly for this, being the toast of the cocktail parties and all.
He has issues.
...and clueless to boot.
Perhaps if he had lost use of his “Left” hand, he would be supporting the conservative Republican effort...
Thank you for the ping Borges.
Sorry to hear of this guy’s choice of words/thoughts/beliefs. :(
When I first heard the name announced, I thought they were honoring the guy that did the voice for Roger Rabbit.
An excellent example of the difference between most liberals and most conservatives.
Par for the course.
Kennedy Center shows are pablum.
So true! Too bad those qualities seem to prevent them from seeing the worst in themselves as others do.
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