FC: Nathanial Ayers Scrap Book Based on The Soloist, Steven Lopez Created By Adam Smith
1: Beethoven I chose Beethoven for the front cover because he inspires Nathaniel the most. Nathaniel believes Beethoven is the greatest musician of all time.
2: Book Summary In this book a reporter, Mr. Lopez, meets a man living on the street named Mr. Nathaniel Anthony Ayers. Mr. Lopez decides to write a column on Nathaniel. After giving Nathaniel new strings for his violin and gaining his he decides to sleep on the streets with Nathaniel. Nathaniel sleeps on the worst street in the city. Over night Mr. Lopez learns how Nathaniel lives. He sees people dieing. When Mr. Lopez writes about Nathaniel he receives five violins and a cello. Mr. Lopez learns about a local shelter and begins working to get Nathaniel to live there. At first Nathaniel refuses the idea of being trapped indoors. Slowly Nathaniel puts more trust in the shelter and the doctors who work at Lamp. Mr. Lopez first gets Nathaniel to go inside by taking him to a rehearsal at the Walt Disney Concert Hall. Nathaniel does not want to go to a concert because he thinks he will feel out of place with all those people. He recieves a back stage V.I.P. tour and meets one of the players, Peter Snyder. Mr. Snyder agrees to give Nathaniel lessons but only in the apartment at Lamp. Nathaniel is thrilled to have lessons but not in the apartment. He does go and discovers it is not so bad. nathaniel still does not want to live in the apartment.
3: Book Summary Nathaniel begins to go to Lamp more and more. One day while Nathaniel is playing under the bridge, his favorite spot to play, a man comes up to him and offers him a gig at his restaurant. The first time Nathaniel performs he plays o.k. but gets an applause. The second time Nathaniel goes there without Mr. Lopez. Nathaniel has a mental breakdown and begins cursing and acting crazy on stage. Nathaniel puts a request in to go to Mr. Lopez's house. Mr. Lopez says that easter brunch would be fine,but he has to leave the cart at Lamp. he does not sit well with this but eventually gives in. this is good because Nathaniel begins to trust int he doctors and patients at Lamp. Mr. Lopez speaks with Nathaniel's sister to find out more information about Nathaniel. He also goes to Juilliard to find out more about him. He finds out that Nathaniel had a mental breakdown at his second year at Juilliard. He was diagnosed with schizophrenia and returned home. At home he drove his mother insane by acting normal and then turning on her. Mr. Lopez went to visit Mr. Ayers who divorced NAthaniel's mother when Nathaniel was ten.
4: Book Summary Mr. Lopez thinks that Nathaniel is getting along well with the other patients and is getting better until someone comes up to him and tell him to tell the real story about Nathaniel the one that Nathaniel is mean to everybody. Mr. Lopez witnesses this when Nathaniel began yelling at a patient to stop smoking. HE also got into a fight with a biker who had a gun. Mr. Robinson gets Nathaniel to agree to a contract which states he will not act up and will sleep in his apartment three or more days a week. Nathaniel needs to pay for Lamp somehow so he is forced to sign up for social security. His sister will go to court for Nathaniel. Nathaniel wants to read the articles about him and then turns on Mr. Lopez because he believes he is not schizophrenic. Nathaniel appologies and Mr. Lopez finds him a studio where he can play music when ever he wants to.
6: Dear Jennifer, Before you come to visit me I just wanted to let you know the environment I was living in. I know it may seem horrible but, I actually enjoyed living on skid row. I had no rules to abide by and could play my violin without any worries. Love, Nathaniel | Postcard to Nathaniel's Sister from Nathaniel
7: Picture of the ghetto- Nathaniel attended the Juilliard Academy for the string bass. After attending the school for two years Nathaniel began failing all his classes except for orchestra. Nathaniel had a mental breakdown and was diagnosed with schizophrenia. He later moved out to Los Angeles where the weather is warm so he can play music outside all year long. Also the statue of Beethoven stands there and he worships him. Skid Row the section of town where he lives. It is the worst in the city. People die and overdose on drugs everyday. Nathaniel though somehow loves it because he can play music all day and is not hospitalized. I think Skid Row symbolizes the strength of Nathaniel. Has the strength to live on the streets and had the strength to attend Juilliard Academy at such an ethnic time. He was one of the only African Americans in the school at the time. Letter to Jennifer- Jenifer symbolizes hope. She believes that Nathaniel can get better and believed in Nathaniel when he attended Juilliard.
8: Transcript I attended E. Davis Jr. High School. My mentor was Mr. Moon for the String Bass. I passed Junior High School as an A and B student. During my high school years my mentor was Harry Barnoff. I dropped my social life and became enthralled in music. Everyday after school I played string bass at the Music School Settlement. I applied to Ohio University and was excepted with a music scholarship. After one year at Ohio University I auditioned for the Juilliard Academy. I was accepted with a full scholarship for the string bass. I attended the school for two years with a scholarship. The first year I got A's in my bass class and theater orchestra class, a C in Piano Class, and B's in my ear training and music literature classes. Although I had a C and two B's I still kept my scholarship due to my advanced skills at the string bass. The second year I began failing all my classes except for concert orchestra class where I advanced to the front row of the basses. After the second year I again was excepted for a n=music scholarship even though I failed most of my classes. During my third year I withdrew from the school because the demands were too high. I later had a mental breakdown and was diagnosed with schizophrenia.
9: Childhood through Nathaniel's First Year at Juilliard- This represents the true part of Nathaniel. Later in his life he has two personalities. This represents the kinder more sophisticated Nathaniel. In this part of his life he is inquisitive and enjoy's his life to a full extent. In this part of his life he is also playing music. When Nathaniel is in his true personality later in the book he is always learning or playing music. Second and Third Year at Juilliard- This part of Nathaniel's life symbolizes Nathaniel's second personality. In this part of his life he is mentally insane and very ethnocentric. He draws pictures on his walls of people that he hates and depicts them being killed. He says racial slurs and takes everything personally. When he is in his second personalaity in the later part of his life he is always angry and takes everything personally and is very worried. Violin- This represents Nathaniel's inner peace. He enjoys playing and is mesmerized by players of the Los Angeles Philharmonic.
10: Advice Column Dear Nathaniel, I would advice you to move into lamp soon or they may give the room to someone else. You are taking too long to make your decision and the room will also be more safe for your cart no matter what you think. Think of it as a new tunnel rather than a home. You will still be able to here the noises just like outside only more. You will here the faucet dripping, cars, helicopters, planes, and the people outside. There will be no cigarette buds or rats. Lamp will also supply you with three meals a day and daily showers. I also advice you to not rush yourself when getting medical help. I here the doctors say that it will only make you more cautious to medication. In the past you have been scared off by prescription drugs and doctors. You need to learn how to trust them. This won't taking quickly but I know you can do it. From, Your Adviser
11: The Lamp Room The Lamp Room is in a poor people home called Lamp. They use techniques that allow the people to move in on there own pace. They do this so the patients can learn to trust their doctors. They help people who have mental illnesses and those who are living on the streets of Skid Row. The room symbolizes Nathaniel's timid behavior because Nathaniel is scared of doctors because of what the prescription medication has done to him in the past. He was hospitalized and forced to take medication so now he is fearful of doctors and medication. The Noises- The noises represent Nathaniel's need to be outside on the street. It also represents his schizophrenia. Nathaniel does not feel comfortable if he does not here the noises of the street. This is one of the reasons why he doesn't want to move into lamp. But when he does he here's all of his regular noises plus the dripping of the bathroom faucet. It represents his schizophrenia because when he plays he thinks that the wings of the pigeons are people clapping. He also imagines other noises being different things.
12: Shopping Cart List 1. Tarp 2. Ford Hub Cap 3. Brahms and Beethoven Sticks 4. Broken Chair Leg 5. Violin 6. Cello 7. Sheet Music 8. Two Dead Palm Fronds 9. A Whisk Broom 10. Cardboard 11. Sweater 12. Soiled Blanket 13. Canvas Sheet 14. Sleeping Bag
13: Tarp-The tarp symbolizes Nathaniel's suspicion. He covers his cello and violin in it so they look like a pile of rags and nobody steals them. Ford Hub Cap and Chair leg- Nathaniel uses these to fend off muggers that may attack him for his instruments. They represent his fight against going into Lamp. Brahms and Beethoven Sticks- Nathaniel uses these to scare the rats before he goes to sleep. They represent Nathaniel's stubborn ways. He does not change or even considers changing when Mr. Lopez meets him just like he doesn't consider letting the rats come near him. Violin, Cello, and Sheet Music- Nathaniel plays these on the streets not to make money but for the love of music. Nathaniel's original violin had just two strings but he still made music from them. The two string violin represents Nathaniel's ability to just make it for Mr. Lopez. Every time Mr. Lopez is about to give up Nathaniel brings him hope once again just like how the two string violin just cuts it for Nathaniel. Whisk Broom- Nathaniel uses this broom to sweep away cigarrette butts on the sidewalk. This represents how Nathaniel needs to unclutter his mind throughout the book.
14: Phone Message from Nathaniel to Mr. Lopez "Hello Mr. Lopez. I will Not go to court! I will Not be hospitalized! I also will Not be staying at Lamp any more! The doctors there cannot be trusted to do their job properly. They are incompetent and will let thieves come into my room and take all my things. The patients there are selfish and dirty. They're always smoking and breaking the rules. They cannot be trusted. They will steal my things. I don't know how they will get in, but they will. I do not care any more and I AM LEAVING. Good by!"
15: Court- Nathaniel had to go to court to apply for his Social Security to pay for his room at Lamp. His sister Jennifer has agreed to go to court for Nathanial but Nathanial has to be notified of the conservatorship hearing. Although Nathanial knows he is not going to go to court his schizophrenia takes over after reading Mr. Lopez's articles on him. He finds them to be insulting and believes he is not a schizophrenic. The court symbolizes society. I say this because Nathaniel does not want to be part of society he wants to be in his own world. when Nathaniel signs those papers the government will know of him and his condition and it also finalizes his living at Lamp. The Doctors- They symbolize Nathaniel's health. They do because they want him to get better. Nathaniel does not want to get better and does not want to see the doctors. The Patients- They symbolize Nathaniel's sickness. The fact that they smoke in the courtyard and bother him all the time drives Nathaniel's insanity. When he is around them he is angry and insane.
17: When Mr. Lopez sleeps on Skid Row with Nathaniel- This symbolizes Nathaniel's carelessness. I say this because Nathaniel only cares about his music. On Skid Row people urinate where they please, liter, and don't care about themselves. Easter Brunch at Mr. Lopez's House- This symbolizes the hope Nathaniel begins to have. He sees that one can have a good life and be happy in society. It also gives hope to Nathaniel because he begins to have a wanting of starting a family. Concerts at Disney Hall- This symbolizes Nathaniel's start of getting better. Mr. Lopez first offers going to a concert but Nathaniel refuses saying that he would feel uncomfortable with that many people. But later in the book he enjoys going and actually meets Yo Yo Ma and people from the orchestra. The Building of Nathaniel's Studio- This symbolizes Nathaniel's much improved health and willing to get fully better at the end of the book. It does because Nathaniel can now have something that will distract him from the other patients which he gets very angry at sometimes.
18: Beethoven By Nathaniel's Ayers Beethoven, You are the one Chosen, To reign over me, music, and Los Angeles I wish I could be no less than you, But I am. I walk into your domain, And I am grateful for the once two string violin, Grow into six violins, cello, trumpet, bass, and piano, Mr. Lopez and his army of supporters, Guide me through my life, They are the ones who have hailed me with these gifts. I love your city Beethoven, The freedom the streets allow me, But I will have to abandon the streets. To a home, A home at Lamp, Where I can shower and eat three meals a day. I am sorry Beethoven, For I have failed you.
19: The Poem- Later in the book Nathaniel wanted to begin a poetry reading at the music studio. This represents Nathaniel's continuous health growth. This does because Nathaniel wants to be part of a social group such as Lamp and is opening up to the other patients. Beethoven- He symbolizes Nathaniel's mentor. I say this because Nathaniel believes him to be the owner of the city and tries to be like him as much as possible in the field of music. The failing of Beethoven- This symbolizes Nathaniel's move to society and of the streets. He believes that Beethoven wants Nathaniel near him and on the streets. This symbolizes him taking a step toward society because now he is off the streets and is over coming the voices in his head. The Red Color- It symbolizes Nathaniel's cruelty to the other patients int eh middle of his recovery. He curses them out and is all around rude to them until Doctor Robinson convinces him to sign a contract agreeing he wont pester the other patients.
20: Letter to family from Nathaniel Dear Mom, My second year at Juilliard has been extremely stressful. Mr. Mensch has lead a hard orchestra class. It is my only class that I am not failing or have an incomplete in. I wish I could be home right now making visits to your salon and playing the bass you gave me in the Music Hall Settlement. The pressure out here is about to drive me insane. One boy I knew, Rabin; killed himself. I now practice in the cells upstairs which are solid cement with no windows. People feel asthough I am becoming strange. They say I am becoming hellish, drawing dead on accurate depictions of people righting racial epithets and musical references. I think I am going to drop out. Love, Nathaniel
21: Juilliard- This symbolizes Nathaniel's extreme work ethic. Nathaniel's work ethic is extreme all throughout his life. He practices hard throughout his junior high and high school life. He played his bass everyday after school to become just as good as Mr. Barnoff to attend Juilliard. Then even after Nathaniel had a mental breakdown Nathaniel still had an extreme work ethic. He plays on the street everyday trying to perfect his music. Nathaniel's Mother- She symbolizes Nathaniel's difficulties. Throughout her life after Nathaniel dropped out of Juilliard she had to deal with his troubles.He would enlighten her at times with his sophistication and disturb he every other time with his madness. It confused her greatly just as it does to Mr. Lopez. Rabin's Death- Rabin's death symbolizes the death of Nathaniel's sane mind. It symbolizes this because they both died of the same thing, the Pressure from Juilliard.