Creating the “Soundtrack” of a Novel

As a writer I’m often asked how I chose my novel’s setting or how I came up with the story line. Last fall, for the first and only time, I was asked how I chose the musical pieces in my book. It’s a great question. Naturally, the person who asked is...

Török Testvérek: A Dynamic Hungarian Trio

While the rest of the U.S. stampedes to mass arenas for rock concerts, I gravitate toward classical and folk music in small places. Some of my favorite musical experiences have happened in venues not much bigger than a classroom. I love the informal rapport that...

Les Mis, Played Out and Lived Out

This is the text of my recent News Tribune article about a high school musical production that was not only a joy for the audience but transformative for the school community. In May Stadium High School transported me to nineteenth-century Paris—violence, poverty,...

Merci, Maestro Christophe Chagnard

On Monday, March 23, 2015 the Tacoma News Tribune printed an article I wrote about my memories of working with Christophe Chagnard of the Northwest Sinfonietta.  I am posting the text of the article below.  If you’d like to see the article in the TNT’s...

Our Art: A Wonderful Friend, A Terrible Master

My brother, Walt Hampton, is a very talented musician and also a highly skilled music teacher.  In fact, if you have a child in public school, it may be that your child’s elementary music teacher uses one of Walt’s books on teaching marimba.  Perhaps the teacher has...