Wednesday, August 10, 2005

The Better Half

This post is by my wife Marjorie -

Today, while walking and listening to my husband's recording of "Russian Easter Overture" I came home insisting to share an entry on Ilkka's blog. I think a wife deserves that much, don't you? We have lived through a traumatic and sad year but have grown all the wiser and closer for having survived our crisis together.

My first encounter with Ilkka Talvi took place in a chamber orchestra in Los Angeles. I will never forget how mystified and intrigued I became while listening to a violin solo that he performed during a concert. Who was this quiet, humble man that sounded like a beautiful voice from the past? Since I had been brought up on and practically fed Heifetz and Kreisler recordings in my youth, I immediately recognized that this dark, Finnish violinist played with a sound reminiscent of a bygone era. I wanted to know him...KNOW him. I pathetically inched my way close to him to say, "Gee, you play so beautifully". His reaction, ever so typical of my Ilkka was, "So what?" He has always failed to take compliments well and I doubt will ever be at ease with flattery.

So, we did get to know one another well, and in the process have created a life in music and two fantastic daughters. As trying as life can be, and as unforgiving, I feel it an honor to share my life with one who is so remarkable, yet humble. Ilkka, a shy, sensitive man, has not always received the recognition or acknowledgement that he's justly deserved. I am in part writing this for all those who care to know, that I believe there are a few among us who are unsung heroes, my husband included. They unobtrusively perform their tasks and duties so well, yet with such humility, that they go unnoticed and are not applauded for their rare talents and contributions.

I would like to say "thank you" to Ilkka for being a magnificent artist, husband, father and friend. He used to rush home after concerts in order to say goodnight to our girls, and they've flourished from all that love and devotion.

Thank you Ilkka, for sharing your rich, worldly experiences with your family and students, and congratulations for unearthing another marvelous talent in writing, especially in a language that only became yours in your adult years. .