As you may know, my father, Harry Fischer, passed away on December 25, 2008. I wasn't sure what to do in terms of blogging on this blog, so I did what I usually do and followed my instincts. I thought of something my father liked—the conducting of Willi Boskovsky, a specialist when it comes to Viennese waltzes and polkas—and found an amusing example.
It was weird to post something so frivolous during such a somber time, but it also seemed right, which is why I went ahead with it. After that I couldn't bring myself to do anything for a while—the first time in years that this blog ceased to be at least a "daily"—but I came to realize that I would be able to use this blog format at times to pay a kind of tribute to my Dad, and comfort myself and possibly others who knew him, by posting about more things that he liked, or that related to him in other ways.
I also realized that I should post some explanation of all this as soon as I could bring myself to do that, because I didn't want my little group of readers to be too weirded out or mystified by what I was posting. So this is the explanation.
And here are two clips of "Mein Herr Marquis" or "The Laughing Song" from Johann Strauss's charming operetta Die Fledermaus, which is often performed in star-studded New Year's Eve performances. The first clip is a concert version led by André Rieu, the current schmaltz king of Austria (even though he's Dutch). During recent months Dad absolutely loved to watch Rieu's glitzy televised concerts. And, at the nursing home, we met a very nice resident (and her very nice daughter) who also adored those performances. Following the Rieu clip is an example of how the piece can come across in performance, under the baton of Plácido Domingo.
Here's to a New Year full of change for the better.