In Washington, D.C., at a Metro Station, on a cold January morning, a man with a violin was playing Bach. During the 45 minutes that he was there, approximately 2,000 people went through the station, most of them on their way to work. After about 3 minutes, a middle-aged man noticed that there was a musician playing. He slowed his pace and stopped for a few seconds, then hurried off to stay on schedule.
At 6 minutes: A young man leaned against the wall to listen, then looked at his watch and started to walk again.
At 10 minutes: A 3-year old boy stopped, but his mother tugged him along distractedly. The kid stopped to look at the violinist again, but the mother pushed hard and the child continued to walk, turning his head the whole time. This same interest was displayed by several other children, but every parent—without exception—forced her child to move on quickly.
After 45 minutes of continuous playing: Only 6 people stopped and listened for a short while. About 20 gave money but continued to walk at their normal pace. The man collected a total of $32.
After 1 hour: He finished playing and there was silence. No one noticed and no one applauded. There was no recognition at all. The violinist was Joshua Bell, one of the greatest musicians in the world. He played Bach’s D Minor Chaconne, one of the most beautiful and complex pieces ever written, with a violin worth $3.5 million dollars. Two days earlier, he had sold out a theater in Boston where it cost on average $100 to sit and listen to him play the same music.
If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world, playing some of the finest music ever written, with one of the most beautiful instruments ever made . . . How many other things are we missing as we rush through life?
See this story live: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hnOPu0_YWhw
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