Anton Rubinstein

Your Imperial Majesty, if I gave you a beautiful cannon, all mounted and embossed, with no ammunition, would you like it?

-responding to Tsar Alexsander III’s inquiry if he appreciated his donation of the old Bolshoi Theater to the St. Petersburg Conservatory. Subtext : The theater was abandoned and falling apart…and the Tsar provided no money to help rebuild/renovate it