Saturday, March 23, 2013

No. 221: Music is not that important

Music is not that important 
A shot at the real truth behind 'disappearing' music in schools and society.
(in dedication to John Dewey)

"Music is not that important."


What could I mean by this?

In our struggle to advocate for music in education and in our daily lives, we confuse the messenger (music) with the message (what music teaches us and helps us to experience).

The reason I make music and have devoted my life to understanding singing and the teaching of singing is not for music alone.  It is for the experience of music.

It is this EXPERIENCE of passion and aliveness which is not present in many of our schools, in many of our cities, and in many of our lives.

In advocating for the messenger we are forgetting the message:

Are our children waking up excited to learn?
Are WE waking up excited to learn?
Are we aware of what it means to be intensely alive?
Are our children being taught to seek this state of being?

Opera Organically is learning to sing without necessarily uttering a note.  When we are most ALIVE we are in many ways equal to the greatest singers we revere.  Yes, striving for beauty of tone and adherence to composer's wishes are intensely important.  But our striving to the mastery of these is moot if our own existence and experience are not connected to that striving.

We are not missing music in our schools.  We are missing the acknowledgment that what brings us humans alive comes in as many infinite variations as our faces and fingertips.  We are missing the knowledge that Bach or Brahms, Thelonius Monk or Luciano Pavarotti may have left breadcrumbs along their pathways of life in music that could lead a student to their own powerful expression of being.

When we remember this, life--singing, music, education, our children, our Selves--becomes much more than a daily grind toward passable test scores.  It becomes an exciting treasure hunt full of countless possibilities.

THIS is Life.  THIS is Love.  THIS is Opera Organically.

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