Shine for me as I travel on”
Martha Louise Weiss was born April 11, 1968 to Celia and Martin Weiss in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Eventually they moved to Bainbridge Island, Washington.
When Martha was almost six, she, her brother Matt, and Mom studied violin with Dr. Shinichi Suzuki in Matsumoto, Japan. Dr. Suzuki’s specialized Kindergarten made a definite impression on Martha. She would continue playing her violin, piano, sing, write poetry, and paint canvases. Her talents were many. Her passions deep. Her love eternal.
In high school, Martha was a full scholarship student at both the Northwest School for the Arts Humanities and Environment and the Seattle Academy of Arts and Sciences. After this she studied at Canada’s Vancouver Academy of Music and continued in Canada at the University of British Columbia.
Already a seasoned “busker” at Vancouver’s famous Granville Island, Martha travelled to Europe for more. There she was introduced to the European world of busking with a Scottish folk band, The Skuobbie Dubh Orchestra. Her globetrotting days took her to ten countries before returning home to Seattle.
In her thirties, Martha suffered exhausting bouts of bi-polar episodes which left her homeless. She relied on Seattle’s Downtown Emergency Service Center’s Shelter. With help, she got back on her feet by channeling her experiences from busking on the streets of the world into her musical passions. Through all this, Martha insisted: “People can come back from TRAGEDY.” She said: “I believe everything is cyclical.” So she gave back, busking to hundreds of people by performing all genres of music on her blue violin. She became known as Martha, “the lady with the blue violin.”
Everybody, young and old, loved Martha and her music. Her renditions of unaccompanied Bach were taylor-made to match every person’s musical taste.
CDs of Martha’s best works will be available soon.
Dearest daughter, Martha,
Your memories are like flowers. They come and go, but they never get lost. They are my personal treasures. They dance with your grace. When they need to wilt, I’m sure that their little personalities will come back even richer than before.
I have learned so much from these flowers. As I walk out of stillness, I witness even more memories along the road. My treasure journey continues……..with your love by my side.
Thank you Martha for your garden of life.
Your Mom, Celia
Martha’s Leaf is located at Seattle Mennonite Church in Lake City.
Featured Leaf October 2014.