The six year old clutched her violin case to her chest. Nadia's heart thudded against it in a staccato rhythm that competed with her tapping feet. Nervous excitement flooded through her at the prospect of her first concert.
A heavy hand rested upon her shoulder, and she stilled while glancing up at her papa.
“Is it time, papa?”
He nodded and smiled.
She required no other encouraging words. After she opened her case, she tightened and put resin on the bow. Her check of the strings also completed, she took a deep breath and stepped on the stage.
Lights hid the crowd’s faces. Her shoes clicked along the polished wood. She bowed and sat behind a music stand. She felt hidden from the world, and the knot inside her stomach eased.
She rested her chin upon the instrument and placed her fingers just so. Another breath filled her lungs, and she imagined butterflies floating from her as she exhaled. Their yellows and oranges disappeared in the too bright lights.
With the bow resting above the strings, her eyes focused on the music sheets.
Another beat, the bow kissed the strings while her fingers danced and the violin sang.