Impressions of Saint Louis

by Jeffrey Carter

Today’s guest blogger is Dr. Paul Davis, newly-appointed Director of Instrumental Studies and Music Director of the Webster University Symphony Orchestra.

Davis Paul webI have been fortunate to live in many beautiful places in this country.  Being a Baltimore, Maryland native, my early years were spent learning about early American history and taking in the beauty of the Chesapeake Bay.  After moving as a young teen, the Rocky Mountains and Glacier National Park were literally my back yard!  In my college years, I had the fortune of living at the east entrance to Yellowstone National Park at Cody, Wyoming, the city that Buffalo Bill built.

And I have continued to be blessed in my adult life, living in the Pacific Northwest, the hill country of Austin, Texas, the rolling Appalachian Mountains in South Carolina and a year living literally on the banks of the Mississippi River in downtown Memphis.

Now I am thrilled to continue my life’s journey in the great city of St. Louis.  And the fit could not be better!  What is it that makes St. Louis so enticing and appealing?  I have found two answers – the people and the culture.

I have found the people of St. Louis to be genuine, welcoming and engaging.  From my co-workers at Webster University to the eager faces of the young adults in my classes to the professional music community and even the good folk who check my groceries at Schnuck’s (what a great name!), the people who I encounter have a love of what they do and a zest for what life brings.  There is such an opportunity in this area to grab the best of one of America’s great cities and at the same time experience a quality of life found only in the joy of picking fresh fruit from an area orchard or just relaxing in a secluded spot on the Missouri River.

Perhaps what is most enticing about St. Louis is the rich and diverse culture that is immediately important to these good people.  A society is defined by its culture, and the importance that people place in it.  The people of St. Louis are keenly aware of how the arts enhance our quality of life and help to define and refine our human existence.  Webster is such an active and integral part of what the arts mean to St. Louis and region.  And the people of this city know the significant part that Webster University plays.  Everyday we are integral in building and sustaining the great culture of St. Louis.

It is very exciting to be at Webster here and now!  I am thrilled to be a St. Louisian!