Marvin Hamlisch, Really

I can’t believe that Marvin Hamlisch has died. He was pretty young–68 doesn’t seem so old anymore! He wrote so many songs we still hear. I still remember going to see A Chorus Line on Broadway. I was afraid that it would be kind of stale because it had been running for a line time, and I was also disappointed (at first) because there weren’t any fancy sets (except for a whole bunch of spinning mirrors, which made up for a lot!) But it was GREAT, and it really spoke to me, as I am a former dancer.

And I think that was what made Marvin Hamlisch such a great songwriter. No matter the form of his pieces, he spoke to people about their hopes and dreams, their fears and uncertainty. He gave voice to so many things we think and sometimes, what we can’t quite let ourselves think. That’s what prose writers do, too. And poets. That’s what the arts are all about, at least for me. To sing about the human condition, the world we live in, and the worlds we want to live in, or are afraid may come to pass. He was a storyteller, just like me.

One thing he talked about was that he had periods in his life where he had no work. He said that people always assume that a successful artist is always busy with assignments, and that is not the case. That seemed such an honest, real thing to say.

It’s so easy in this day and age to be snarky and hide our true hopes and dreams behind emoticons. How much do you let people see the real you? I would love to hear what you have to say.



One Response to “Marvin Hamlisch, Really”

  1. Alan Kistler says:

    I host a weekly audio podcast with a friend and use social media to reach out to fans and followers. So I definitely make sure the face I put out there is very much my own. I don’t want to have to distinguish between Alan Kistler as a character and Alan Kistler the real person. It’s also been a nice way of disciplining what I say/write in public. Personal friends may know me well enough to give certain jokes and remarks a context, but when I feel like snarking or making a criticism online or on the podcast, I pause and ask “Do I really mean this? Is this the best way to say it so it’s clear?” Which has helped my writing, too.

    I think I’m definitely open about hopes and dreams because I think if they’re worth something to you then you should speak up. Life is too short to act like a cynic if you truly have hope. Isn’t it more exciting to display your hopes and see who else wants to jump in and celebrate with you? 🙂