Monday, July 5, 2010
Symphonic music to me was, and still is, the most thrilling, most powerful of the arts.
I love rock and roll. I love the big band sound. But what a symphony orchestra is -- the sight of sixty, seventy, sometimes ninety men and women working together is what gets me.
Their unity is what involves me in the music. Men and woman -- their concentrated playing of instruments they love, have studied, mastered, keep practicing on, striving to perfect --the tone, speed, phrasing, dynamics -- staccato, legato , fortissimo, pianissimo -- all those lilting Italian words that represent hundreds things they all know and feel in their bones without translating.
I'm just talking about something I've experienced, and re-experience -- deeply enjoy, and treasure -- sharing it, for no reason except the orchestras of America and Europe are becoming endangered species.
Yes, museums, theaters, ballet companies, zoos, botanical gardens, and libraries are endangered. But the symphony orchestra ... I've performed as part of the orchestra, and it was as if the arms of God were on me, around me, lifting me -- gliding, guiding, and sending and me into the space that I shared with the musicians and conductor and we were one and the same. I didn't cry, laugh, or get giddy with joy because I was so wondrously IN the music. I just danced.
What a privilege! I own it. Other people do also. I'm just sending it on to you so that if you have a chance to go to a symphony concert -- GO.