Wallace Hartley was an English violinist that made an interesting choice on April 15, 1912. It was the choice to stand tall, use his talents and continue playing as the ship (RMS Titanic) that he was on, sank.
As the passengers and crew of the Titanic scrambled to get to the lifeboats, Hartley did what he did best – he played along with this band to try and calm down the situation. At first you might think this is crazy and he should have been trying to escape and make sure his fellow band members made it to safety, though he stood his ground and his band respected and followed his lead all staying to play their last song and going down with the ship.
We all have different talents in life and you never know when you’re going to be called to put them in to action. Hartley and the rest of musicians performed their last performance trying to purvey a sense of calmness so that the others could find a way to survive.
A newspaper at the time sums it up best, “the part played by the orchestra on board the Titanic in her last dreadful moments will rank among the noblest in the annals of heroism at sea.”
What will you do when your time to shine comes?
The musicians of the RMS Titanic
- Wallace Hartley • bandmaster
- Roger Marie Bricoux • cello
- Theodore Ronald Brailey • piano
- John Wesley Woodward • cello
- John Frederick Preston Clarke • string bass and viola
- John Law Hume • violin
- Percy Cornelius Taylor • piano
- Georges Alexandré Krins • violin