A letter from Equador

April 20, 2016

James Strauss:  Dear friends,

Longest & most terrible moments of my life

We were just finishing up the dress rehearsal for the concert, 80 musicians on stage, final preparations. Suddenly everything started to shake. I was stunned and remained in my position. The conductor stopped without understanding the gravity of the situation when the light bulbs from the ceiling exploded. I began helping a member of the orchestra who has mobility problems. The earthquake seemed never-ending, almost 3 minutes of panic. We were able to evacuate the theater before part of the ceiling fell on the orchestra. An hour later on the way home, Guayaquil was without light, chaos in the streets, the police asking them to stay away from buildings, because there would be aftershocks.. I slept very little, feeling my building shaking all night…But everything is back to control, I’m still a little scared… But they say the worst is over…

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