There is so much about my family that I love. There is so much about my parents and my grandparents’ lives that I find fascinating and inspiring. It’s too much to go into…especially on the internet. However, I just want to say to anyone and everyone that reads this blog how very blessed and lucky I feel to have grown up a McGreevey.
I come from a wonderful family of artists, thinkers and story-tellers, and while at times I feel intimidated by everything my elders have done before me, I mostly just feel motivated to carry on their legacy. I feel really lucky to have been encouraged by my entire family to pursue my dreams. They made it possible for me to dance, to study literature and to live a charmed life for which I know I am very fortunate.
At the moment, I’m thinking quite a lot about my Grandpa McGreevey. When I was about 8 or 9, I was very into my ballet training. It was the first time I remember clearly thinking that it was a passion I wanted to pursue professionally. I also wanted to learn everything I possibly could about the art form–the technique, the history and of course, the music. Classical music had only been something I heard occasionally in TV commercials or movies. I knew the Nutcracker inside and out but beyond that I didn’t have much knowledge of any composers or the great works they were known for composing. I told my Dad that I wanted to get some classical music tapes, and he said he would talk to my Grandpa.
My Grandpa knows everything about opera and classical music and had an amazing collection of classical LPs, so he took it upon himself to make me a mixed tape of some of his favorites. It was like a sampler of great composers and ballets all crammed into a 90min double sided tape. I think I still have it and I will always keep it because, well, it changed my life.
That collection of music–with the likes of “The Firebird,” “Romeo & Juliet,” “Rodeo,” “Petruschka,” “Fancy Free” and the “West Side Story” prologue– was a jumping off point for me. I became enchanted with classical music and wanted to hear as much as I could. I wanted to know who the composers were and who were the lucky choreographers who first shaped their music into movement. I believe that tape started me on a path of knowledge and musical exploration that I am still on now. I think it was also the first time I realized that classical music and ballets for that matter, don’t have to be safe or boring, they can be exciting and daring! It’s a funny thing how something that could appear to be so trivial ended up having such a huge impact on me and my life choices.
Just wanted to share.
Hope you are having a good Wednesday!