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creativity – Teachable Moments
Jan 202013
 

Tonight I was blissfully happy.

My teenage son, Sunshine, his friend, and I were given free tickets to the Arturo Sandoval Save the Music concert at our beautiful local theater.  I could not keep the grin off my face. I sat on the edge of my seat with tears in my eyes watching teenagers, classmates of my son, play in the first ever Arturo Sandoval Institute Allstar Student Jazz Band opening for Arturo Sandoval himself.  I was filled with pride and joy as I watched kids I ‘know’ step up and play with skill and heart. One of them even got to sub in with Arturo Sandoval’s band at one point.

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As a bonus, the actor Andy Garcia introduced Sandoval and then played bongos in his band. (Yes, he actually plays the bongos, as well as the conga and piano.)  

 

 

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Sunshine had his own fan boy experience watching sax player and band leader Gordon Goodwin play as part of Sandoval’s band.

 

Arturo Sandoval was wonderful.  He’s not only musically talented, but he’s very funny and a great teacher.  His banter between songs was priceless.   Paying tribute to his mentor, Dizzy Gillespie, in words and music, he explained how Gillespie helped invent Be-Bop when Swing was all the rage.  He confessed that growing up in Cuba, music saved his life.  It was in 1990,when Sandoval was on tour with Dizzy Gillespie, that he was able to defect to the United States from Cuba.

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Not one to take without giving, he has created the Arturo Sandoval Institute to preserve instrumental music education in public schools and universities worldwide. Part of the proceeds from the night go to our city’s arts organization as well as our local school district’s educational foundation.  

I find it hard to put in to words just what watching good live music does to me.  It’s as if my soul wants to leap out and dance.  When I watch kids or teenagers pour their hearts into their music, I can barely contain myself.  It is one of the most transcendent things I’ve experienced.

Tonight, I am grateful to my son for asking his band teacher for an extra ticket for his mom.  And, once again, I’m grateful for music.

 Posted by at 09:17
Jul 072012
 

A few days ago, I wrote a post about The Curious Hieroglyphick Bible and in that post I mentioned that I like new takes on the Bible.  So here’s another one: The Brick Bible: A New Spin on the Old Testament.  That’s Brick as in Lego Brick.

Yup. Lego. Awesome, right?

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I bought The Brick Bible for my kids last Christmas and we spent hours pouring over it and marveling at the clever way the stories were represented as well as asking each other “Really?  The Bible says that?”

Some of the Old Testament is really bloody and Brendan Powell Smith doesn’t shy away from depicting the violence. My kids were fascinated.

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Here’s the best part!  It’s online as well.  In fact, www.bricktestament.com contains illustrations from the New Testament too.  

How awesome is a Lego depiction of the Last Supper?

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From the website: “The world’s largest, most comprehensive illustrated bible.  A sprawling website best suited for those with the maturity to read the entire bible.”  Now there’s a challenge.  I’ll admit that I love some of the illustrations, but others make me squirm.

Smith even tags the stories according to content: N=nudity, S=sexual content, V=violence, & C=cursing.  He isn’t shy about depicting modern day events in order to make a point either.  
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It’s a great place to start a discussion…or an argument.  I’m telling you, it’s not for everyone, but it may just get you thinking and talking and reading and learning about God.

 Posted by at 18:23
Jul 042012
 

I love books – actual books.  The way they feel, how they smell.  I love curling up in odd places with them propped open just right.  They speak to me in a way audiobooks and eBooks never will.

 

But today’s Teachable Moment is brought to you by…..my Kindle.  I discovered a treasure called The Curious Hieroglyphick Bible.  I saw it on the Library of Congress list of books that shaped America.  I hadn’t ever heard of it, so I went trolling around the Internet.  No copies at the local library, but Amazon had it and the first chapter was free on the Kindle – instant satisfaction for my curiosity! 

 

Can I just say “WOW!”?

 

It’s an 18th century collection of “select passages of the Old & New Testaments” illustrated with nearly 500 woodcuts.  Sound boring?  Not at all!  It’s an incredible work of art and the way it is put together is wonderfully clever.  The title page describes it this way “Represented with emblematical figures for the amusement of youth designed chiefly to familiarize tender Age, in a pleasing and diverting Manner, with early Ideas of the Holy Scriptures.” 

It reminds me of an early graphic novel.  The Creation story is absolutely gorgeous.   I can see 18th century children pouring over the illustrations for hours. 

 

Look at the way they represent God and the Spirit at creation:

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I’m hooked!  I love new takes on scripture, no matter how old.

 

By the way, there are only 4 original copies of this book, but you can peek at photographs of the first chapter here. Be sure to click on the Kindle edition. The Print edition can’t compare.

 

 

 Posted by at 19:18
Jun 032012
 

The Sara(h) Syndrome.  That’s what I’m calling it: the urge to blog.  It’s true: all of my friends named Sara(h) have a blog as do many other friends and acquaintances.   But writing is not as easy as it looked when they did all the heavy lifting.

Here are some thoughts on why by someone way more eloquent than I am.

It’s long. It’s worth it.

Just start watching. Give it a chance.

You can turn it off if it bores you.

(The end is the best part.)

 

 

 Posted by at 20:12