Thursday, April 23, 2009
While watching pianist, Leon Fleisher in performance, it is hard to believe what an epic journey of pain, contemplation and soul-searching this 80-year-old musician has experienced. Mr. Fleisher mysteriously lost the use of his right hand in 1964 and after 30 years he was finally diagnosed with focal dystonia, a selective neurological disorder related to Parkinson’s Disease. They don’t know the cause and they don’t know the cure. But they discovered a method of alleviating the symptoms and that method is, of all things, Botox. Injected into his arm, it allows the muscles in his right hand that have contracted to relax. After just one course of injections, he was able to play the piano again with two hands. The short film “Two Hands” (an Oscar nomination) about his life is well worth seeing. I was fortunate to see the film before Mr. Fleisher took the stage today. He’s an inspiration with a wonderful sense of humor and his performance was absolutely stunning.
at 7:13 PM