The first music I ever composed for the theater was in 1945. It was an organ grinder’s waltz for a high school production of A Man with a Flower in His Mouth, by Pirandello. I scored it for all the woodwind players I could round up who were willing to sit backstage until their brief moments of glory occurred when the theme and variations were played on cue. I’ll never forget the rush of hearing the music as the lights went down and the set appeared when the curtain opened. It made the music feel completely different than it did when played in an empty room. The music made the set look and feel different when it was added to the production. I’ve been in love with the theater ever since.