Watch: A Police sergeant plays Beethoven

Watch: A Police sergeant plays Beethoven


norman lebrecht

March 29, 2017

This is Sergeant Jim Quackenbush of Portland Police Bureau, Oregon.

He will arrest your attention.

Jim has participated in master classes with Lazar Berman, Gyorgy Sebok, John Browning, and Christopher O’Riley.


  • Iain Scott says:

    Could do with more of that- great advert for classical music and engaging people with it.

  • Jeffrey Biegel says:

    Great story! No surprise that these guys are out there. My dad was a Captain in the NYPD. Loved music, and created a beautiful set of chimes that I used in elementary school. Took music in Queens College as a minor to a Political Science major. Anyone hear about the Singing Sergeants? Look them up. And remember Daniel Rodriguez, who worked in the NYPD Midtown and sang so beautifully after 9-11 in NYC? Hmm–maybe Jim can start something nationwide combining music and law enforcement–perhaps there are more musicians like him out there in the police departments throughout the US??

    • Jonathan Landis says:

      I’m actively seeking a job in law enforcement and have played the violin my entire life. I still actively perform for the graduates of the police Academy and teach lessons on the side. This is so awesome to see the other side of law enforcement. We are all human beings that have real lives outside of law enforcement and people need to see this side of us. Keep up the great work!

  • Rosamond van der Linde says:

    Yes, combine music and police work. Get young kids into piano lessons, the earlier the better. Please look at an unusual music school.
    Read the book, “A Piano in Every Room. This is the true story of 7 pianists living in a 42 room house with 34 pianos!!

  • Theodore McGuiver says:

    Nice work! Lucky man, too, playing a Fazioli.

  • Pianofortissimo says:

    That reminds me of Charles Ives utopian vision in his ’Postface to 114 Songs’: ‘… the day will come when every man while digging his potatoes will breathe his own epics, his own symphonies (operas, if he likes it); and as ghe sits of an evening in his backyard and shirt sleeves smoking his pipe and watching his brave children in their fun of building their themes for their sonatas of their life, he will look up over the mountains and see his visions in their reality, will hear the transcendental strains of the day’s symphony resounding in their many choirs, and in all their perfection, through the west wind and the tree tops!’

  • Roger R says:

    I think this is the guy who busted me for jaywalking.

  • Jo Hammond says:

    When does he get time to practice?

  • Sue says:

    This brought tears to my eyes!!

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