In a dark room sit clusters of circular wooden tables and chairs while a handful of vintage lamps radiate warm light. A red upholstered banquette runs along a dark wall, reminiscent of a century ago. But the focus of the room is a gleaming, black piano on a stage enveloped with red curtains, a platform designed to transport audiences to Toledo, Ohio’s golden era — and envision its next one.
In episode 2 of Weight of Sound, Toledo Symphony violinist and teacher at Maumee Valley Country Day School Tom Sieberg shares memories brought back through Brahms Symphony No. 4—the joy and inspiration of music education and teaching music with his wife Colleen: “...she also knew how to challenge kids. I mean, that was one of her biggest gifts. She wasn't afraid to give any group any piece of music because somehow she knew they could get it done. And she was going to see to it that they did it.”
As concert halls and jazz bars closed amidst the pandemic, the music community had to find new ways to bring music to people. In doing so, they’ve also opened up doors to broader audiences. Midstory talks to Zak Vassar, President and CEO of the Toledo Symphony Orchestra, and Chris Anderson, founder of Open Tone Music, about how the pandemic changed our access to music—for the worse, but also for the better.
In episode 1 of Weight of Sound, Toledo Symphony Orchestra President Emeritus Bob Bell discusses his decades-long connection with Bruckner symphonies as an audience member, a percussionist and a community leader: "We want quick satisfaction—whatever we want to do we want to always go as fast as we can. Bruckner’s music is for another time. Things are a little slower and more lofty in a way. But every bit is relevant today as ever..."
Midstory is a 501(c)(3) non-profit thinkhub that progresses the narrative of the Midwest by incubating bright, diverse and interdisciplinary thinkers to exchange ideas and envision the future of our region through multimedia storytelling and solutions-oriented research since its founding in 2018.
As an educational media organization, we inform, interpret and inspire in and for the Midwest and believe that our region’s challenges can be our greatest asset to drive renewed interest and human capital into post-industrial cities.