In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review April 5, 2007 / 14 Nissan, 5767

Where music takes us

By Paul Greenberg

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Contrasts can clash, like pink and chartreuse. Or they can please, like red and green. Much depends on the strength of the different elements, and if they add up to something greater than the sum of their distinct parts. Like blue and green on a cool, overcast day at the beginning of an Arkansas spring. You can almost taste the intoxicating air, and every winding street seems a bouquet of dogwood, magnolia, wisteria, camellias, azaleas….

On this near-perfect spring evening, the Great Hall of the Clinton Library in Little Rock is a near-perfect place to hear chamber music. Mainly because it isn't a great hall but a chamber that seats only a few hundred, and so has the feel of an intimate gathering of old friends. Its high ceiling lets the music resonate, and the sight of the regulars in the audience, and onstage, reassures. At least some things don't change, any more than spring does.

There's also the view: An expanse of glass, bisected by burnished steel beams, frames the stage and, beyond it, the Little Rock skyline as the sun sets and the lights in the office buildings grow bright. Neon signs here and there provide accents. You could almost be looking at some sharply drawn, noir comic strip from the 1930s. Perhaps a view of Gotham City in an old Batman comic book. You start looking for the Bat signal high in the sky.

The modernesque setting offers a pleasing contrast with the classical music to be played; the clear glass and burnished metal complement the polished wooden sheen of the viola and violin. An evening of chamber music should begin with all the slow-paced rituals of anticipation. At the Clinton Library, a civilized air sets in once you clear the metal detector, the last sign of the brutal present before you step onto the escalator for the slow rise to a statelier past. Time begins to slow after the day's jangling preoccupations.

Perspective and proportion set in even before you hear the players tuning up. Time's usually fixed boundaries grow lax, then disappear. Past, present and future meld. You think of a garden wedding you once attended, the formally dressed chamber group performing on the grass as friends and family gathered on a summer's day….

Chamber music is to music as still lifes are to painting—simple yet infinitely challenging. Its elegance stills the mind while sending it soaring. The best and subtlest things can be the simplest, not just in music but in any art that demands concentration more than volume, focus more than ballyhoo.

Then it is time to begin with, of all things, a touch of ragtime—the Graceful Ghost Rag, which lives up to its name. Think of player-piano music elevated to the classical—softened, heightened, inviting the mind to take a stroll. … But modernity arrives with a crash, clash, bam and slash. Its name is Schoenberg, and it's about as welcome as a hangover.

Schoenberg is less a feature of a chamber music concert than an interruption, a great jagged ruin encountered in the midst of a graceful boulevard. Not a ruin from a time-softened, moss-covered past, but a ruin from a disjointed future still under construction.

Tonight's construction project for this quartet is Schoenberg's Phantasy for Violin and Piano. It should be scored for jackhammer and pile driver. It doesn't so much end as shudder to a halt. Like some city planner's vision of a discordant future that is already rusty.

Come the 22nd century, perhaps some future species with six eyes and no ears will hear Schoenberg's amelodic works through its tangled tentacles and feel the same joy Mozart gives us now. After all, Haydn in his time struck at least one royal critic as being just noise. Yes, Franz Josef Haydn, Papa Haydn himself! Tastes do change. Anything can happen in the future. But this evening I'd prefer to live in the past.

Ahead lies more than relief: the high point of the evening, a seldom played Tchaikovsky, the String Quartet in E-flat minor. It soars and rounds and sweeps and weeps. A ghostly Russian Orthodox choir floats above it, like figures in a Chagall mural.

It would be hard to describe some of the passages played by violinist Joanna Whang this mild spring evening without using the word sublime. It is enough to say of her performance that she did Tchaikovsky justice. Surely there is no higher praise for a violinist. Then it is over. And the listeners, like the ghosts, float away, elevated.

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