He's one of classical music’s most important composers - and on the eve of his 80th birthday, we got to ask him what he thinks about the state of classical music in 2016.
Mark Landry has been entertaining Montreal commuters for years. But when the busker woke one morning to find his violin stolen, he probably didn't expect to have a new one within hours.
Mark Landry is well-known to commuters in Montreal. For years, the homeless violinist has busked around the city’s Metro stations at rush hour. But earlier this week, he woke to found his violin had been stolen while he slept.
Faced with the loss of his only means of making money, he resorted to writing a sign: ‘Violin stolen, please help’. His desperate hope was that the commuters he had entertained for years would be moved to help him out.
He could not have known how proactive some of those people would be, one of whom posted a picture on Facebook:
The post reads: “Mark, the violinist of Joliette station, had his violin stolen last night. I publish this photograph at his request in the hope that a Good Samaritan has a violin to give.”
Marie-Philippe’s post was soon noticed by the Orchestre Métropolitain, who contacted a local violin shop and arranged for them to provide Landry with a brand new violin. A CBC reporter was there to see the violin being prepared for its new owner:
At Maison du Violon, Mylene Maisonneuve-Letarte tests out violin for Marc. He'll get it this pm at Joliette metro pic.twitter.com/wtVDPcEnLt— Alison Northcott (@AlisonNorthcott) April 12, 2016
Landry told CBC that when he realised his violin was gone, he thought: “I gotta go through the lower level of poverty, which is to live without my violin.”
But he knew he’d get a new one: "I said, 'God's gonna give me a new one.'" Here’s Landry, showing off to all the local news reporters on his new violin. Good, isn’t he?