You are not permitted to download, save or email this image. Visit image gallery to purchase the image.
I hate the arts. You have to go somewhere, sit still, concentrate, be quiet.
You have to turn your phone down and miss calls and texts.
You have to sit in the dark.
You need an attention span.
There's a piano.
People whisper and rustle annoyingly, they scrape their seats and crane their necks.
Then a man comes.
He strides on to the stage, a grey-suited figure who arrives at the piano on the dot of 1pm; he takes his seat and not a word he speaks as he sits down to play.
You are stuck.
I hate the arts.
The pianist leans forward into his work, he tilts his head to the side as the tempo changes, he straightens up as the music brightens then he leans forward again as it softens away.
The music begins to get jaunty, a little overconfident, and it begins to take hold of your senses.
It gets playful and tinkles like a stream, it becomes a river and it begins to flow though you, and then it is something you know, you have heard it so many times before, a refrain, you know it so well, and the variations begin to dig into your soul.
The tendrils snake inside your chest and into your head, where old memories linger and forgotten sorrows lightly slumber and childhood fears and passions swim just below the surface.
They all awake as the music circles and swoops and soars, they start to boil inside you, they make you feel emotions and experience strange nameless longings.
Then just as quickly the music stops.
There you sit in silence, emotional and exhausted, having transcended the everyday for a brief and powerful moment.
I hate the arts.
- Michael Houstoun left Dunedin after playing at the Glenroy Auditorium yesterday afternoon.
He was excellent.