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My office is looking pretty awesome right now. Thanks to Baerenreiter for these super cool banners! Total Bärenreiter-Verlag fanboy. #urtextpolice (2 photos) ...

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As we hurtle towards commencement time I'm sharing this excerpt from a speech Steve Jobs gave to the graduating class at Stanford in 2005. Even if we can get halfway to the lofty ideals that Jobs exhorts us to espouse we'll be much truer to ourselves than if we lead a life of timidity and fear. Seeing this again yesterday threw me right back to that day almost 10 years ago when I read it the first time, and the adrenaline that started pumping. This guy may have been the CEO of the world's most valuable company, but at his core he was an artist, and he understood the power of beauty. It's something that almost everyone I'm friends with also understands. Students, as you transition on to your next chapter go forth and heed Jobs's words to the extent that you can. They are not totally novel, because this kind of wisdom is handed down over millennia, but all of the noise and static of the modern world makes them more important than ever. Best of luck to you as you finish this semester, and best of luck to you as you go off into the world. Wherever you go and whatever you do, be in touch. I'll be cheering you on. ...

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A huge round of congratulations to the Appalachian Opera Theater, the Appalachian Symphony Orchestra , John Fowler, Tammy Griffin, AJ McCurry and everyone else who made our performances of Le Nozze di Figaro such a resounding success! Bravissimi Tutti! ...

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