Monday, June 4, 2012

No. 192: Student as Teacher Series Part 1: "Faith, on Music"

When we acknowledge that Voice Itself is the true authority in learning to sing, and also in teaching, a curious thing happens: teacher and student are both swallowed up in the sound of authenticity they have the honor of celebrating together.

This is my first chance, and it is a very exciting one, to set the words of an Opera Organically student/teacher upon this blog, like a diamond with many sparkling facets, for you all to see.

Please enjoy the heart thoughts of Faith, 17, on music:

Music is the only thing that has sustained me through the long years of my life. It's been my one true companion, never wavering or leaving my side. I've nursed it and given it life, and it's never shown me grief over anything. It's said exactly what I've needed to hear, or listened when I've required that also. After all that I've been through, it's the only place I can call home.

Is music a place, then?

Yes, I do believe it is. It's everywhere and nowhere all at once. It's in the air we breathe, and in the chatter of strangers nearby. There are very few people who can hear the music as I do. Most call it noise, but I recognize it for what it is: music. I can hear the music in every fiber of every living thing. None of it escapes me. It runs through my veins; it's a part of me—of everything! But I've already explained that.

Since I've already explained that music is a place, theoretically, one can visit it. But how would one go about getting there? The answer isn't as difficult as you might think, getting to a place that isn't physically there. All you have to do is close your eyes and be aware of everything and nothing all at once. Listen to the birds trilling, or the laughter of a child. You have to listen to the music you have been given and embrace it.

Even unpleasant things are music, for not all melodies are happy or joyous, now are they? No, they are not. We all are aware of such things. And yet, we seem to shy away from the sad melodies that music plays, in favor of lighter ones, save for when we are in the lowest pits of despair ourselves. All music is beautiful, but not everyone can see it.

We've trapped it and conformed it to help ourselves comprehend it, but it cannot be fully comprehended. Nothing so large ever can be completely understood. But we've attempted to do so, and in trying, we have stripped it of its former glory until it is a fraction of its former self.

Yes, the modern definition of music is quite simple, isn't it? This is how the dictionary defines it:



An art of sound in time that expresses ideas and emotions insignificant forms through the elements of rhythm, melody, harmony, and color.


The tones or sounds employed, occurring in singleline (melody) or multiple lines (harmony), and sounded or to be sounded by one or more voices or instruments, or both.


Musical work or compositions for singing or playing.


The written or printed score of a musical composition.


Such scores collectively.

It seems so basic. But what most have failed to recognize is that music is so much more than that. It's a living thing that we can only contain for so long before it breaks free of the bondage we have put it in and reveals its true self. And when it does, it will come in such a rush that none will be able to ignore its wild, primal sounds… or its soft, refined ones. Music is complex, and yet utterly simple, but it's incredibly transfixing in its own way, is it not?

Music has the power to hold sway over your emotions, and provoke feelings from you that you never thought possible. It can bring you to cloud nine every time—all you have to do is listen. Music doesn't ask much of you; it only asks that you really, truly listen to it. And once you learn to truly listen, you can hear it in everything.

So, then, what precisely is music? By attempting to explain it, I'd be imprisoning it again, and I won't do that, not after I've set it free. But music is everything you want it to be, nothing more, and nothing less. I cannot turn your music into my music, and you cannot turn mine into yours. The definition of music is something deeply personal for everyone, and it's not something that can be given as a gift, or even earned, because it can't be taken away.

Thank you Faith!  THIS is Opera Organically! (: 


No comments:

Post a Comment