A Lesson in Diplomacy

If you’ve ever had to deal with the thoughtless behavior of someone, you’ll appreciate this story about the great composer and pianist, Franz Liszt.

The virtuoso musician once found himself at odds with an important member of his audience. The czar of Russia, Nicholas I, made a late entrance during Liszt’s concert. Even after being seated, the czar continued to speak with members of his entourage. Liszt realized that Nicholas had no intention of ending his discourse, so he stopped playing and bowed his head.

Noticing the silence, Nicholas dispatched one of his aides to find out why the pianist was no longer playing.

“Music herself should be silent when Nicholas speaks,” Liszt replied.

After that, Liszt was able to finish his recital with the czar’s full attention.

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