Bernard Chasan wrote:
>But there is a puritanical strand in all of this - how much better to
>play music than just to LISTEN to music!!!
Having grown up in the Boston area, I feel familiar with the puritanical
mind-set, and I don't see it operating on this issue. There are advantages
to receiving a musical education as it relates to the listening and
understanding of music.
As a youngster, I was force-fed a musical education: reading music,
books about music, studying music theory, playing clarinet and piano,
and performing in front of limited audiences (that was really the pits).
I dumped all of it as soon as I became a teenager and moved on to my
rebellious years. But decades later, I found myself wanting to get
immersed in classical music, took piano lessons again, and even bought
a piano with a bench where I could store some cd's (only kidding).
My point is that I don't believe I would ever be listening to classical
music without that educational background as a child. Also, I know that I
have more insights into the music than I would without the background; some
of that training does seem to stick throughout the years. But, I want to
emphasize that musical training and enjoyment of music don't have to go
hand in hand. I've known plenty of folks over the years who love classical
music and have zero training/education; I have no reason to think that
their love and enjoyment is less than that of a person who was musically
educated. And I know for sure that I'm not going to take a musical
backseat to a person who received much more training/education and exposure
than I did, although I would likely defer to that person concerning
technical aspects of music.
Anyways, I don't regret having dumped classical music when I was younger,
or getting back into it in more recent years. My only regret is that I
can't tell my dad, who passed away many years ago, that I appreciate the
education he gave me.
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