Friday, February 27, 2009

What does music mean to you?

Open another tab and read this welcoming speech by Dr. Karl Paulnack to the Freshman class at the Boston Conservatory, then ponder on the question a bit.

I've at times been accused of being too willing to defend singers who don't sound perfectly beautiful when they sing. I plead guilty... It's the humanely imperfect singers whose willingness to share their most vulnerable thoughts in their vocal portrayal of songs who communicate to me more than beautiful singing machines ever do. There is a strange sense of companionship that gets established when someone's music making can make you believe that whatever set back you've had in your life is something s/he has experienced, too.

Photo is a screen shot from Vesselina Kasarova's 2004 concert on the Prinzengracht Canal in Amsterdam. Charles Spencer accompanied her on the piano.

1 comment:

Georg said...

Hallo Smorgy,

I understand what you mean. Imperfection in singing or playing could very well make you appreciate someone even more.

In the beginning, I did not like a violin playing alone because of its peculiar sound. Nevertheless, once I went to listen to a quatuor and the violin started first.

The guy started and made an enormously loud booming sound. Incredible for such a tiny instrument. But the sound was slightly wrong. Even I did hear this. Strange to say but from that moment on I appreciated the violin much more than before.

Favorite player: Jehudi Menuhin and then Sophie Mutter (I am a patriot).