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This post was inspired by something actress, Helena Bonham Carter shared in a podcast I found on YouTube over the weekend. 

First, allow me to say that a HUGE percentage of my favorite actors/actresses hail from the UK - Helena Bonham Carter is one of them. 


Not only is she one of my faves because of her incredible talent as an actress, but there is also something about her as a person I've always found attractive. She has a light that shines from within that comes through in every interview I've watched. I admire how real, down-to-earth, and comfortable she is being herself. She's also very funny. I find myself listening closely to whatever she's saying, not wanting to miss a single word. 

I find her captivating. 

And after watching this podcast, even more so. There were so many things she shared about how she views acting, which was so in sync with my own views when I was a stage actor. I also strongly identified with her outlook on life, using difficult experiences to learn and grow, staying optimistic, and not seeing yourself as a victim. And parts of her childhood were very similar to my own. One thing she said that struck a cord was - "I was born an old soul" - I too felt that as a child. 

At one point in the podcast, she talked about something that happened when she was 13 years old, concerning her father. She said, "It's up to us what we make of those experiences, not allowing them to defeat us". Which is exactly what I have always told myself. Even as a child I instinctively sensed that.

Something I thought was brilliant is a quote she has posted above her desk in her home office so that anytime she looks up, she'll be reminded. The quote comes from Itzhak Perlman, who was a polio survivor and a wheelchair-bound violin virtuoso.

"Our job is to make music with what remains." 

I found that quote incredibly inspiring. It's the people who have had tremendous obstacles placed before them and overrode them I tend to follow because I want to learn from what they learned. And I also want to learn from the people who don't always get what they want. Because let's face it, we are not always going to get what we want. We're going to get what we need. And getting what we need is not always easy. 

Hard times are unavoidable. We will all have to deal with them throughout our lives. They seem to come in waves. But it's what we make of them that determines what they do to us. They can harden us and make us fearful and paralyzed. Or they can soften us and make us all the wiser and richer. 

For me, I find that embracing hard times gives me an awareness of their purpose in my life. The more I resist them, the more pain I feel. The closer I bring them to me, the easier it gets because I receive clarity and can move through them. 

Anyhoo, I wanted to share this post today not only because I found the quote (and Helena Bonham Carter) so inspiring. But for anyone who might be going through a tough time and feels the need for some inspiration. 

Right now, all over the world, things seem to have reached a crescendo of chaos. And I intend to do the opposite by not adding anything to that chaos. But rather making music with what remains. 

Thank you, Itzhak!

  
Play on, everyone!
And make music...🎵

Several other UK favorites are: 

Men - Colin Firth, Ewan McGregor, Anthony Hopkins, Steve Coogan, and Bill Nighy. 

Women - Judi Dench, Maggie Smith, Emily Blunt, Olivia Colman, and Helen Mirren. 

I could probably name 50 more!

26 comments:

  1. Oh Ron, I love this post for two reasons. Like you, I am a MAJOR fan of Helena Bonham Carter. And I just noticed on the sidebar of your blog that you hightlighted her most recent film, 'Nolly', which I saw a week ago. Wasn't it wonderful? I watched it twice! Initially, I had no idea that the character was based off a real person. I cried at the end of the movie.

    Also, I love the quote! You're right, there seems to be nothing BUT chaos (and anger) all over the world. We need a lot of music right now.

    Thank you for sharing the link to the podcast because I plan on watching it this weekend. And I agree with ALL the actors/actresses you mentioned on your FAVE list. Emily Blunt and Ewan McGregor YES!

    Uplifting and inspiring post, Ron! Thank you for sharing your positive spirit! xox

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  2. "It's the people who have had tremendous obstacles placed before them and overrode them I tend to follow because I want to learn from what they learned." --- Me as well, Ron! Anyone who has experienced extreme adversity and comes out the other side, I admire them so much and want to find out how they did it. I think we learn much more from the hard times versus the good times. Several years ago, I went through about two years of personal challenges. As hard as it was, I learned so much. Now, I see it as a gift. But back then, I was terrified.

    Did you ever see the movie, The Kings Speech, with Colin Firth and Helena Bonham Carter? Such a touching storyline. And it had two of your UK favorites! She was also in Harry Potter. Excellent actress! I like Emma Thompson too.

    You've done it again Ron. Inspired me! Thank you, kind sir!

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  3. Ron, isn't Helena Bonham Carter the bomb? I've been following her movie career for years. What I love about her is that her whole body of work is so diverse. She can do anything, and do it well! Loved her and Johnny Depp in Sweeney Todd! I like a lot of the Tim Burton (her ex-husband) movies they did together. He's another genuis!

    Beautiful and inspiring quote. I'm interested in finding out more about Itzhak Perlman. I've not heard of him. That first photo of him as a young boy is so sweet. Is that Ed Sullivan standing next to him?

    Guess what? I always felt like an old soul as well.

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  4. Hola Denise!

    Wasn't "Nolly" faaaaaaaaaaabulous? I found in online by accident. I didn't even know anything about the film, but when I saw Helena was in it, I automatically watched it. And BOY, was I ever impressed! I too had no idea who Noele Gordon was, and knew nothing about the TV show. Such a brilliant series. And I liked that it was only three episodes. I cried at the end too. I didn't expect that ending.

    Do watch the podcast because I think you will LOVE it, being a Helena Bonham Carter fan. I like the woman who interview her as well.

    I fell in love with Emily Blunt the second I saw her in "The Devil Wears Prada." And Ewan McGregor I have always loved. And even more so after I saw him in "Halston".

    Thanks so much for stopping by tonight, Denise! Have a fantastic rest of your week!

    X

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  5. Daniel I LOVE this...

    "Anyone who has experienced extreme adversity and comes out the other side, I admire them so much and want to find out how they did it. I think we learn much more from the hard times versus the good times."


    YES! YES! A million times...YES! Couldn't agree more.

    "I went through about two years of personal challenges. As hard as it was, I learned so much. Now, I see it as a gift. "

    Isn't it something how in retrospect we see what it was that the challenge taught us? And you're right, I see it as a gift.

    Yup! I saw "The Kings Speech" years ago and went bonkers over it. Both of them were exquisite in their roles. And so was Geoffrey Rush. Me too! Emma Thompson is incredible. Loved her in "Good Luck to You, Leo Grande."

    Thanks so much for stopping by, Daniel! Hope you're having a terrific week so far. Enjoy the rest!

    X

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  6. Hello there, Abby!

    Yes, she sure is the bomb!

    "What I love about her is that her whole body of work is so diverse. She can do anything, and do it well! "


    Ditto! Her resume goes from one thing to the other; each one completely different. She is also excellent in both drama AND comedy!

    Loved her (and Johnny) in "Sweeney Todd." I saw that show several times onstage, so I was anxious to see the film. I loved them both in their own way. I was never a fan of Sondheim, but Sweeney is one of his that I adored. I tend to like dark musicals. And Sweeney is very dark. But also very funny!

    Yes, you are spot on...that IS Ed Sullivan in the first photograph. Isn't it a sweet photo?

    Thanks so much for stopping by, Abby! And I'm happy to hear that you too are an old soul!!!

    Have a great rest of your week!

    X

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  7. Ron, I'm with you about actors and actresses from the UK. I also love UK movies. I've got to say that I prefer movies made outside of the U.S. I noticed you listed Bill Nighy. Did you ever see him in the movie, "Living"? He was so good in it. The movie was excellent.

    You said something here that really hit home for me -- "Because let's face it, we are not always going to get what we want. We're going to get what we need. And getting what we need is not always easy." -- you are so right about that, Ron! We do tend to get what we need, which is not always easy but ends up being a positive thing in looking back. And it's usually something that helps us for something in our future. I just wish we knew it at that time. LOL!

    Aren't Judi Dench and Maggie Smith such wonderful DAMES? Love them both! I want them to live forever!

    I really enjoyed this post, Ron! You gave me much food for thought. Thanks!

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  8. Ron, what you shared about getting what we need, and getting what we need is not always easy, is so spot on. I found that out early in life. I also found out that what I "thought" I wanted wasn't always the best for me. And getting what I needed (although is wasn't easy as first), ended up being for the best. Like you, I try not to resist the challenging experiences in my life because it only makes them more challenging.

    I believe that everything in my life has a purpose. Nothing is just for the hell of it.

    Life doesn't move in one straight line. It moves here, there, and everywhere. So it's best if I just go for the ride.

    Thank you for this post, Ron. Inspiring indeed! Love that quote. And Helena Bonham Carter too!

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  9. Morning, Candice!

    And thank YOU because your comment added SO MUCH to this post topic. Well said!!!!!

    "I believe that everything in my life has a purpose. Nothing is just for the hell of it.

    Life doesn't move in one straight line. It moves here, there, and everywhere. So it's best if I just go for the ride."


    *applause and cheers*

    YES! And isn't it something how we eventually see that what we got was exactly what we needed? And that's not easy to see at first. Our initial reaction is to resist and push it away. It's only in bringing it closer do we get the clarity to move through it. Looking back on my life and those experiences, I now see them as "gifts".

    Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing, my friend. THANK YOU! And have a great rest of your week!

    X

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  10. Gooood morning Robert!

    Meeeeeee too! I also love UK movies. In fact, I just recently watched "My Policeman" which was shot in the UK. Not only was it a beautiful story (based on real life), but the cinematography and location was beyond gorgeous!

    " Did you ever see him in the movie, "Living"? He was so good in it. The movie was excellent."

    I most certainly did! EXCELLENT film! And a perfect example of a gorgeous UK film! From the second that movie started, I was immediately drawn in. It was a work of art! And Bill Nighy is such an outstanding actor.

    ".....but ends up being a positive thing in looking back. And it's usually something that helps us for something in our future. I just wish we knew it at that time. LOL!"

    You got that right! Lol! Wouldn't be great if we knew it at that time? But only it's in looking back that we SEE what purpose it had in our lives. Too bad we don't all have a crystal ball that we can look into to see the future!

    Did you by chance see the movie " Tea With The Dames?" Judi and Maggie were both in that film! The whole cast was stellar!

    Thanks a bunch for stopping by and sharing, Robert! Have a grrrrreat rest of your week!

    X

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  11. I thought so! That photograph is precious!

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  12. This is strange, but I feel as though the first time I saw Helena Bonham Carter was in a Pride and Prejudice movie or miniseries, but I can’t find it listed anywhere!?! I just remember being quite enamored by her performance. She has quite a magnificent stage presence about her. I like many of the actors/actresses you listed.

    I love that quote by Perlman and seeing the violin with the quote reminded me of Violins of Hope, which a dear friend of mine has written/photographed a book about. If you aren’t familiar, it’s about the restoration of violins taken from Jews during WW2. So, it’s both literally and figuratively making music with what remains. How amazing is that?

    Thank you for such an uplifting post to start my day. Stay warm! It’s brutal out there. XO

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  13. Ron, how I love that quote! As an amateur musician, of course, it sums up so much of my philosophy about making music, regardless of our ability level; and as a human being, it speaks to me of how interconnected we all are, and how important it is that we live in harmony with the melody our world is playing. Does that sound weird?


    Sadly, our world today has become a cacophony of noise -- people seem angry and frustrated, media blasts opinions the way one throws darts at a board hoping to hit something, our leaders fail to live up to our expectations, and so on. We need to learn how to embrace silence and tune in to the beauty our world offers instead.


    Thank you for this lovely post. I hope you enjoy the rest of your week (you did get snow, didn't you??) xx

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  14. Before I left my response comment to yours, I Googled Pride and Prejudice (both the movie and series) to see if I could find out if Helena Bonham Carter was in the casts, and didn't see her listed. Could you be thinking of a different film? Perhaps it was "Room with a View" you're thinking of?

    Either way, I agree... "She has quite a magnificent stage presence about her." I adore her!

    " If you aren’t familiar, it’s about the restoration of violins taken from Jews during WW2. So, it’s both literally and figuratively making music with what remains. How amazing is that?"


    Okay, I had never heard of Violins of Hope, but found it online. THANK YOU SO MUCH for recommending it because there is a documentary I found about it, that I am going to watch tonight! And it's ironic you mentioned that because Perlman is Jewish, but was born after WW2.

    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend. And thanks again for the recommendation!

    X

    OMG, I am sooooooooooo enjoying this colder weather. It's only 17 degrees here today. I just got back from Trader Joe's and had so much fun walking in it! I know, I'm crazy!

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  15. Gooooood morning, Debbie!

    Isn't that quote fabulous? The second I heard it, I felt so drawn to its message.

    And absolutely not, this does not sound weird at all. In fact, it's brilliant!

    "As an amateur musician, of course, it sums up so much of my philosophy about making music, regardless of our ability level; and as a human being, it speaks to me of how interconnected we all are, and how important it is that we live in harmony with the melody our world is playing."


    I believe that music is something (regardless of where we are from or what language we speak), that speaks the same language to all of us. Music is a UNIVERSAL language. That's why when I watch an opera in Italian, it doesn't matter that I don't understand the language because the music translates it into a language I do understand.

    " We need to learn how to embrace silence and tune in to the beauty our world offers instead."

    A-MEN! A-MEN! and A-MEN!

    It's probably because I live in a city and am closely surrounded by people all day, every day, that I am bombarded with all that anger and frustration. Philly, sorry to say, is an angry city to begin with. However, it's worse now. So living here is a wonderful way to practice what I believe is true - do the opposite by not adding anything to that chaos. But rather making music with what remains.

    Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your insight, my friend. Enjoy the rest of your week as well!

    X

    Yes, we did get snow and I was soooooooo happy. I took some photos, which I will be sharing next week. It's also VERY cold (17 degrees), which I am also happy about. I think I need to move to Antarctica, Alaska or Iceland, don't you? LOL!

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  16. Oh, man, I love all of the actors you mentioned. I loved the video with Helena Bonham Carter, especially when she asked, "Do you know Mary Oliver?" Oh goodness, I was in tears. Mary Oliver is my favourite poet. LOVE. And now I've added two Julia Samuels books to my TBR list, so thank you for that!

    And I just read Denise's comment, so I must watch Nolly now!

    Excellent post, my dear friend. 😘❤️

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  17. Hey there, Kari!

    Wasn't the video faaaaaabulous? I watched it all the way through once, and then went back and watched certain parts. And before finding that video, I had no idea who Julia Samuels was?!? I now follow her on Instagram! I really liked the questions she asked Helena. I found the whole podcast sooooooooo interesting.

    You will LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Nolly, I just know you will. And that's how I found the podcast on YouTube. I searched for any information about the movie and the real-life character, and that video popped up. So glad it did!

    Thanks so much for stopping by, my friend! Know that I am sending you (and your dad) Reiki and love every day.

    X

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  18. Do you know what I love about Helena Bonham Carter, Ron? She literally transforms herself with every role and BECOMES the character. I've been following her career for eons. It all started with A Room with a View. I don't know how many for sure, but I bet she's done almost 100 films.

    I look forward to watching the podcast you spoke of. I also get that feeling about her - real and down-to-earth. Very unpretentious.

    I can't wait to see Nolly. Just from the trailers, it looks so good!

    "But it's what we make of them that determines what they do to us." - I loved what you said! It's all about our perception, isn't it?

    Powerful quote! True, the world is crazy right now, I've stopped watching the news because I see just how much the media enjoys adding wood to the fire. No thank you.

    Thank you for sharing your positive energy, Ron! It's needed. By the way, you also have a light the shines from within! xoxo

    P.S. Nice and COLD right now, hu? Did you see that we might be getting more snow on Friday?

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  19. Good evening, Elaine!

    "She literally transforms herself with every role and BECOMES the character."

    Yes, she sure does! And she goes from one genre to the next. Drama, comedy, musical, etc. I don't know how many films she's done either. I quickly checked on IMBd and it listed 92! LOVED A Room with a View!

    Being that you are a fan of hers, I think you will enjoy the podcast. I found it completely by accident and glad I did. I watched it once, and then when back and rewatched different parts.

    Nolly is faaaaaaaaaabulous! Please watch it. I didn't know anything about Noele Gordon or her career. The film takes place during the time she was on a soap opera in the UK. All the other actors in the film are fabulous as well.

    Me too, it's been two years since I've watched the news. I see things online about what's happening, but I refuse to watch news programs. And for the reason you shared - they love to add wood to the fire. They sure do!

    Thanks so much for stopping by, Elaine! And yup, I love this cold weather and the recent snowfall we got in Philly. I've spend the past few days walking around the city, savoring it. More on Friday they say. Bring it on!!!!!

    Have a great weekend!

    X

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  20. Yes, Ron, I most certain did! Over the years, I've watched it THREE times!

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  21. Robert, you got one up on me, I've watched it TWO times. It's one of those films that I will continue to rewatch.

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  22. Ron, being that I'm a fan of all things GOTH, I've seen every film that Tim Burton has made. Which included Helena Bonham Carter. She is one of my (and my girlfriends) favorites. Not only beautiful, but extremely talented. I've seen a few of her interviews and agree, she seems very comfortable with herself.

    As I've shared with you in the past, I always enjoy when you share your personal insight (and experiences) about life. You inspire me, and give me things to reflect on. Like this post and that quote!

    Example:
    " And I also want to learn from the people who don't always get what they want. Because let's face it, we are not always going to get what we want. We're going to get what we need. And getting what we need is not always easy. "

    So true! When I look back on things that I didn't get and got very frustrated about it, I eventually saw WHY I didn't get them. Now, I still get frustrated when that happens, but not for not nearly as long as I used to.

    Thanks for sharing, dude! Enjoyed your list of UK favorites. Daniel Day-Lewis is one of my favorites.

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  23. Hiya, Matt!

    Meeeeeeeeeeee too! I am a huge fan of Tim Burton's films, and all-things GOTH! But you already knew that. LOL! One my favorites is "Edward Scissorhands." In fact, one of my co-actors from Florida is in that movie. A large portion of the film was shot in the Tampa!

    " When I look back on things that I didn't get and got very frustrated about it, I eventually saw WHY I didn't get them. I still get frustrated when that happens, but not for nearly as long as I used to."

    I too still get frustrated when that happens. But like you, I don't hold on to it as long as I used to because I remember how everything worked out for the best in the past.

    LOVE Daniel Day-Lewis too! I remember seeing him for the first time in "My Left Foot".

    Thanks so much for stopping by and for you kind words, my friend. Have a faaaaaaaabulous weekend!

    X

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  24. Ok, so I zipped over to that podcast for a few minutes and she mentioned Mary Oliver, and I'd just read one of her poems a couple weeks ago that I really liked, and down the rabbit hole I was going... but... pulled myself out long enough to get back here and comment....
    LOVE HBC! (Just stopped on Alice in Wonderland the other day on t.v. because one of her Red Queen scenes was on! Fabulous! ... and... The King's Speech was on recently too!)
    That's a great quote, thanks for sharing it!
    For me, I think some experiences in my life have hardened me a bit. Not to say that there haven't been many things that have made me feel compassion and appreciation, too. Certainly! But... there are still a couple things that I seem to not be able to let go of. More work is needed, and that's ok!!
    Definitely share many of your women/men favs!
    I think it's wonderful that you're choosing to make music instead of add to the chaos in the world.

    Now... back to that podcast...

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  25. "and she mentioned Mary Oliver, and I'd just read one of her poems a couple weeks ago that I really liked, and down the rabbit hole I was going... but... pulled myself out long enough to get back here and comment...."

    OMG Mary, that made me LOL! I was the same way, once I started watching it, I couldn't stop. I actually watched it TWICE. And it's so ironic you mentioned poet Mary Oliver because one of my readers (Kari) mentioned the same thing in her comment!!!!

    "LOVE HBC! (Just stopped on Alice in Wonderland the other day on t.v. because one of her Red Queen scenes was on! Fabulous! ... and... The King's Speech was on recently too!)"

    Isn't she just wonderful? As you can tell, I adore her!

    " But... there are still a couple things that I seem to not be able to let go of. More work is needed, and that's ok!!"

    Yes, you are absolutely right, that's TOTALLY okay! For me, healing (and letting go) takes time and comes in stages. Do you remember the post I shared last summer about going back to my childhood home and experiencing a deeper healing from my past? Well it took me until I was 68 years old to get to that point. And I'm STILL healing and letting go.

    Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing, neighbor! Have a great rest of your week!

    X

    P.S. Tomorrow we get MORE snow!!!!

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