There have been a few moments in the last few weeks which brought to life the idea of synchronicity. A few weeks ago I returned to Indianapolis to celebrate the retirement of Professor Henry Leck from Butler University. He was conducting a performance of Durufle's Requiem, and I offered to give some words on the music.
In the spring of 1999, Henry returned from an all-state and strongly endorsed the Durufle Requiem after having heard Paul Salamunovich conduct it. At the time I was looking for a topic to propose for the Butler Summer Institute, a $2,000 grant with on campus residency. After spending the summer of 1999 analyzing the work, I applied that research to my senior honors thesis and graduated in 2000. I've assisted many performances of the work and most recently sang it in 2008 under the baton of Paul Salamunovich himself while he was the interim conductor of the USC Chamber Choir. Paul himself actually prepared the chorus for a performance that Durufle himself conducted in Los Angeles. From Durufle to Paul, from Paul to Henry, from Henry to me. What a small world, and how lucky I am to be a part of it.
My study of the Durufle led to my dissertation exploring Faure's Requiem and its place in the genre (the works that influenced it and its influence on works like Durufle's). I owe Henry a lot for introducing it to me.
Also recently, I had a little time to spend in Little Tokyo and found myself at the sushi bar in Oomasa. I first ate there in the spring of 2005 at the tail end of the ACDA National Conference. Who knew that a few months later I would be moving across the country to live here and begin my doctoral studies at USC? Here it is 2013, and I find myself more comfortable ordering sushi (and getting around the sprawl that is Los Angeles). It's hard to call myself an Angeleno, but I have been living here for nearly 8 years. Since I lived in Indiana for 9, I'll soon have to rethink how to answer the classic question: "Where are you from?"
I've definitely spent a lot of time thinking about my past and that slender thread that ties us from where we were to where we are, how little we know about what the future will bring, but that there will be those special coincidences that tie us back to our communities.