Sideline Skill

One of the violinists is a Sears, Roebuck shoe salesman, another is president of the company that makes Golden Glint Hair Rinses. The tympanist is an investment banker. For 25 years the 109-piece Chicago Business Men's Orchestra has been entertaining their friends, their families—but mostly themselves—with their music.

Not long ago they heard of another amateur musician who had just written a bit of music: Actor Lionel Barrymore. They asked for permission to premiere his newest work in Chicago. It turned out to be a piano concerto—which was a little disconcerting. Explained First...

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