Yesterday I watched the British Classical Music Awards whose format and lavish production closely echoed the Oscars. But there was one big difference — the participants. Unlike at the Oscars, there were no people who are neither very smart nor very clever thinking that they are very smart and very clever. It is a sad truth that this kind of cruel self—deception tends to give rise to embarrassing behavior of which its purveyors are for the most part entirely unaware. It all really becomes agonizingly awkward when such people decide to freely pontificate, which is something Hollywood actors like to do especially.
I am personally not a great fan, but it is still heartrending to watch them making fools of themselves before the whole world. They too are Americans, and as a naturalized citizen I want my country to show itself in the best possible light. Sadly, the Hollywood stars seem to have conspired to make this an impossibility when they are in the spotlight. When watching their big night, I even found myself blushing at the hubris and sheer human stupidity on display. I also kept asking myself why they at least do not act smart and intelligent. They are after all actors and supposedly the very best ones, having just received the coveted award.
Thankfully there was none of this at the Classical Music Awards. One could immediately sense that in addition to talent, intelligence is a prerequisite for success in this field. This is quite unlike in acting, which should not be all that surprising, since high level classical music—making is one of the most complex and demanding of human activities. So startling was the contrast that even the most diehard Hollywood fans would have to concede that the average intelligence of yesterday's participants must have been at least 20 points above what one gets at the Oscars. Their demeanor and classy thank—you remarks fully reflected the fact. There was no embarrassing pontificating and there was some genuine humility to boot. There was no reason to blush this time.
Vasko Kohlmayer 5 08 06