I am the great grand-daughter of an orchestra president. It is but a small footnote in my family history, but one I am proud of. In his 10 year career he managed to bring an orchestra into the black, being one of the first symphonies in the United States to do so at the time. He searched for talent and expected his friends with money to contribute to the orchestra that lay at the heart of their city. The joy and art of music is unmatched. The joy of giving back to our communities can not be measured in any monetary way.
It is because of this history that I buy symphony tickets every year. They are a great built in date night, gift to give to others and girls night out. Being able to sit and enjoy a live orchestra is thrilling and peaceful at the same time and I look forward to picking out different concerts each year. The Christmas Pops concert is becoming a fun tradition for the Husband and I.
Music does to our minds and souls something so wondrous it is hard to explain. Every citizen of earth moves in time to her beat. What a privilege to learn of and appreciate music. What a duty to pass on to the next generation the value and importance of notes on a page.
I was given the chance to play violin in the 5th grade. The chance to learn, to push, to be a part of something. A performer upon a shared stage. I did not stick to strings as my sisters did, taking my hand at the clarinet and then the choir. I don’t consider myself musical per se but how my heart thrills to Vivaldi’s Four Seasons or Handel’s Messiah. I know and love these notes written long ago because I was taught and I had a chance to listen to music and appreciate it as a child. As so many arts and music programs are culled in favor of more lofty ideals of science and technology we must make it a priority to remember music, to teach our children to listen in a society filled with noise and distractions.
We are the guardians of the gift, the gift of an ability to listen and enjoy, just because. To revel in the joy of written note. Give your children a chance to hear music, whether Simon and Garfunkel or Mozart’s lullabies. Let them pause in the hectic frenzy of our busy days. Let them be still, dance and revel in what a gift we have in music. Being able to heal our divides, to unite our collective souls, to thrill in our tiny humanity, to be awed in how much is lost of our soul. Music reflects our humanity. Our need to be an audience, to be a player on the stage. Now more than ever music can unite what is divided, can teach us something of our past and future.
I encourage you to take 5 minutes. Sit still, or blast it in the car on your drive. Focus on nothing but the music, the beat, how it makes your heart feel.
Enjoy it for what it brings to you, a peace, a thrill, a momentarily lull from a crazy pace.
Happy listening and don’t forget to support your local music scene!