Ben's Open Road
The Original Roadtrip
Public Television: The Original Roadtrip
arts festival, comparing yourself, composition, discouragement, Europe, travel
When Ben Zander was only 9 years old, his mother submitted his compositions for a competition at a music festival. The judge made fun of them in front of the entire audience stating, "This young man should be discouraged from ever composing again." Undeterred by the judge's scathing ruling, Ben's mother sent his compositions off to Benjamin Britten, the leading composer in England at the time. Benjamin Britten loved them and invited young Ben to come play with him for the three following summers. At age 15, Ben left school completely to study music in Italy and from then on continued to follow his love for music around the world. Today, Ben is a conductor with the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra, proving once and for all that one person's arbitrary opinion should never stop one from chasing their aspirations.